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Environmental Improvements Our Work

Stormwater Information and Resources

Stormwater Information and Resources

What is Green Infrastructure?
Green infrastructure captures, absorbs, or stores rain and meltin snow, taking on numerous shapes and sizes from 55-gallon rain barrels to trees and porous pavers for parking lots, driveways, and sidewalks. You can see green roofs on buildings or bioswales along city streets. All of these strategies store or absorb rain where it falls, keeping it out of our sewer system, which helps:
  • Protect rivers and lakes from water pollution.
  • Keep it from becoming someone else’s headache downstream.
  • Reduce the risk of basement backups, flooding, and sewer overflow.
Categories
Our Work Public Spaces

Greenfield Bridge Mural

Greenfield Bridge Mural

The Greenfield Bridge Mural painted by Nova Czarnecki signifies the gateway to the Harbor District. The mural showcases many of the native species still found in the area. Read below to learn more about all the birds, fish, and other wildlife that inhabit the Harbor District.
IMG_20171107_141523
Great Blue Herons live in almost any wetland habitat in North America and Central America. They are the largest bird in North America ranging from 3-4.5 ft. tall and they can live to be 15 years old. 90% of their time awake is spent searching for food.
Black-Crowned Night Heron3
The Black-crowned Night Heron are native to North America and are found in aquatic habitats such as marshes, wetlands, swamps, rivers, lakes, or ponds. These birds like to nest with other bird species. As a defense mechanism, young Black-crowned Night Herons will vomit.
Cardinal2
The Northern Cardinal is located throughout the central and eastern regions of North America. These birds do not migrate and they prefer to live in grassland and woodland landscapes. Unlike most songbirds across North America, both a male and female cardinal can sing.
Crow
Crows are found all over the world and the North American Crow prefers open areas. These birds are known for their adaptability and intelligence. A group of crows is referred to as a murder.
Goldfinch
The American Goldfinch lives in floodplains and weedy fields throughout the United States and Canada. These birds mainly feed on seeds and typically live 3-6 years. The record age of a Goldfinch is 11 years old.
Robin
The American Robin lives in both wooded and urban areas throughout most of the United States. These birds are mostly active during the day. Most robins migrate south for the winter, but occasionally they will overwinter.
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Red-bellied Woodpeckers are common in many Eastern forests and woodlands and have continued to spread northwestward further into the Great Plains. They are noisy birds that have a variety of calls.
Rose-breasted Grosbeak
Rose-breasted Grosbeaks are common to many deciduous forest habitats near streams and marshes across the Midwest of North America. These birds migrate during the winter. They feed on insects, fruit, and seeds.
Yellow-Throated Warbler and Red-bellied Woodpecker and Western Meadowlark
Western Meadowlarks can be found across western and central North America. They live in grasslands, pastures, fields, meadows, and on the edges of marshes. They migrate south in the winter and they feed mainly on insects.
Pileated Woodpecker and Common Yellowthroat

Pileated Woodpeckers are found in the Northern half of North America and they like to live in heavily wooded areas. They dig rectangular holes in trees with their bill to find ants. This is the largest woodpecker in North America.

The Common Yellowthroat is found in thick marsh vegetation across North America. They feed on mostly insects and they typically migrate at night.

Red-Winged Blackbird and House Sparrow

Red-winged Blackbirds live in grassy areas and wetlands. They inhabit both saltwater and freshwater marshes, especially if cattail is present. The oldest wild Red-winged Blackbird was known to be 15 years old.

The House Sparrow is native to most of Asia, the Mediterranean Basin, and Europe. It is now the most widely distributed wild bird due to its accidental and intentional introductions to many other regions, including the Americas. These birds are very social and nest in colonies.

Northern Pike
The Northern Pike likes to live in rivers, streams, and lakes with dense vegetation throughout the northern hemisphere. Northern Pike have long, sharp teeth and bright yellow eyes. Also, they can swim up to 10 mph.
Rainbow Trout

Rainbow Trout are native to the North Pacific Ocean and Eastern Asia. Today, rainbow trout have been introduced to every continent except Antarctica. Rainbow Trout are predators that will eat almost anything they will catch.

Pumpkinseed Sunfish

Pumpkinseed sunfish live in warm, calm freshwater bodies that have vegetation throughout North America. They travel in schools with other sunfish and bluegills. These fish contain spines that are sharp and aid in protection.

Sturgeon

Sturgeons are native to lakes and coastlines of North America and Eurasia. Most are bottom-feeders that migrate upstream to spawn. Sturgeons have barbels that help them locate prey hiding on the bottom, such as snails, clams, and insect larvae. Lake sturgeon can reach 6 ft. long, weigh 200 lbs., and females can live up to 150 years.

Brook Trout (1)

Brook Trout are freshwater fish that is native to Eastern North America and Canada, but they have been introduced throughout North America and even Alaska. They can grow to be 3 ft. long and live up to 9 years. Brook Trout are a good indicator species of pollutants because they require clean water to live.

Yellow Perch3

Yellow perch, also known as lake perch, are native to the Atlantic, Arctic, Great Lakes, and Mississippi River basins, as well as some other areas of Canada. They live close to the shore of slow-moving rivers, streams, and lakes, feeding on small fish and insects.

Lily Pads
Brook Trout are freshwater fish that is native to Eastern North America and Canada, but they have been introduced throughout North America and even Alaska. They can grow to be 3 ft. long and live up to 9 years. Brook Trout are a good indicator species of pollutants because they require clean water to live.
Girl

A girl is a young female human, usually a child or adolescent. Humans are characterized by erect posture, bipedal movement, high manual dexterity, and heavy tools use. They also have open-ended and complex language, and a general trend toward complex brains and societies. Humans are known for greatly altering their environment to suit their needs and wants.

Categories
Events

Harbor District Bingo

Harbor District Bingo

If you’re looking for a place to explore and to catch some fresh air then we invite you to participate in Harbor District Bingo!

How to play:

• Download the Bingo Card
• Take a photo of each item on the card
• Send your photos to info@harbordistrict.org

If we like a picture, with your permission, we will feature it on our social media and send you some Harbor District swag. Good luck!

!Si busca un lugar para explorar y tomar aire fresco, los invitamos a participar en Harbor District Bingo!

Cómo jugar:

• Descarge la tarjeta de bingo
• Tome una foto de cada articulo en la tarjeta
• Envíe sus fotos a info@harbordistrict.org

Si nos gusta una foto que nos envió, con su permiso, lo presentaremos en nuestras redes sociales y le mandamos un premio por parte del Harbor District. !Buena Suerte!

Categories
Environmental Improvements Our Work

Urban Habitat Projects

Urban Habitat Projects

Floating Islands

MIlwaukee, WI
The Milwaukee River lacks bank vegetation and natural habitat for macro-invertebrates and many fish species because it is lined with steel sheet piling or concrete. In order to improve the spawning and habitat conditions, floating islands were implemented in some areas of the river. The floating islands are made of both synthetic and natural material, benefiting plant growth. Then, algae and biofilms quickly colonize the structures, creating food for zooplankton, and then small fish. The floating islands are designed to provide heavy vegetation providing food, oxygen, and shelter to the fish that are heading upstream to spawn or just passing through. Even more, these structures mimic wetlands, which 80% of native Great Lakes fish species depend on.

Hanging Underwater Baskets

MIlwaukee, WI
The hardened shorelines of the Menomonee, Kinnickinnic, and Milwaukee Rivers make it extremely difficult for plants to grow along the bank. Moreover, because of heavy ship traffic in these urban waterways, many of the river bottoms were dredged, leaving both the shoreline and bottom regions an aquatic desert. Therefore, Groundwork Milwaukee has introduced several floating islands, as well as over 200 habitat underwater baskets in each of the 3 rivers leading to Lake Michigan. These baskets are designed to house plants in-between the corrugations of the sheet piling, introducing food and shelter for fish passing through.

Fish Hotel

Chicago, IL
The Chicago River habitat also suffers from its urban location, usage, and lack of natural vegetation on its riverbank. Thus, the Chicago River walk introduced Fish Hotels. These are fish habitats that provide a portable or permanent habitat that can support algae and macro-invertebrates. Fish hotels provide food and shelter for fish traveling through the river.

Chicago Riverwalk

Chicago, IL
The hardened shorelines of the Menomonee, Kinnickinnic, and Milwaukee Rivers make it extremely difficult for plants to grow along the bank. Moreover, because of heavy ship traffic in these urban waterways, many of the river bottoms were dredged, leaving both the shoreline and bottom regions an aquatic desert. Therefore, Groundwork Milwaukee has introduced several floating islands, as well as over 200 habitat underwater baskets in each of the 3 rivers leading to Lake Michigan. These baskets are designed to house plants in-between the corrugations of the sheet piling, introducing food and shelter for fish passing through.

CHICAGO RIVER KAYAK PARK

Chicago, IL
The Milwaukee River lacks bank vegetation and natural habitat for macro-invertebrates and many fish species because it is lined with steel sheet piling or concrete. In order to improve the spawning and habitat conditions, floating islands were implemented in some areas of the river. The floating islands are made of both synthetic and natural material, benefiting plant growth. Then, algae and biofilms quickly colonize the structures, creating food for zooplankton, and then small fish. The floating islands are designed to provide heavy vegetation providing food, oxygen, and shelter to the fish that are heading upstream to spawn or just passing through. Even more, these structures mimic wetlands, which 80% of native Great Lakes fish species depend on.

HABITAT FOR HARD PLACES

Cleveland, OH
The Cuyahoga River flows through a heavy industrial area of Cleveland that handles large ships and barges. Like other Great Lakes shipping regions, the steel and concrete holding the riverbanks together and the dredged river bottoms lack proper fish and wildlife habitat. The Cuyahoga River is the passageway for fish to enter Lake Erie and without appropriate habitat; spawning and fisheries are negatively impacted. Therefore, in 2015 and 2016, gated structures were put in place along the river wall that provides food and shelter from predators.

FISH HABITAT ENHANCEMENT DEVICES

New York, NY
To improve the shoreline of the Hudson River, FishHEDs were introduced. The fish habitat enhancement devises are designed with steel and mounted on the harbor wall with brackets. The structures hang in the water and provide alternative spaces for macro-invertebrates and fish to congregate.

BIOHUTS

Baltimore, MD
Baltimore’s Inner Harbor has lacked refuge vegetation and habitat for fish passing through. Therefore, Biohuts were installed on the bulkheads of the harbor. A Biohut consists of a double layer cage. The innermost portion is filled with oyster shells. These shells attract microorganisms, which quickly colonize the area. The oyster shells contain juvenile oysters, which can grow and filter out algae from the water. Then, barnacles and mussels can attach to the shells and structures, further filtering the water. The outermost cage offers a predator-free zone for any juvenile fish.

SEAWALL PROJECT

Seatle, WA
The Milwaukee River lacks bank vegetation and natural habitat for macro-invertebrates and many fish species because it is lined with steel sheet piling or concrete. In order to improve the spawning and habitat conditions, floating islands were implemented in some areas of the river. The floating islands are made of both synthetic and natural material, benefiting plant growth. Then, algae and biofilms quickly colonize the structures, creating food for zooplankton, and then small fish. The floating islands are designed to provide heavy vegetation providing food, oxygen, and shelter to the fish that are heading upstream to spawn or just passing through. Even more, these structures mimic wetlands, which 80% of native Great Lakes fish species depend on.

LOWER DON LANDS

Toronto, Canada
The Lower Don Lands consist of 308 acres of Toronto waterfront that has been neglected over the years, as it is part of a shipping channel. The vision for this space includes merging the urban and natural environments to meet the cities’ sustainable and community goals.

THE PORT LANDS FLOOD PROJECTION PROJECT

Toronto, Canada
Downtown Toronto’s southeastern region could be easily overwhelmed by floodwaters in an extreme weather event. In fact, 290 hectares are at risk of flooding from the Don River. Therefore, it is proposed that the Don River be reconnected to Lake Ontario by creating a river mouth. This project would include over 1,000 m of new river channel, 13 hectares of new wetland, 5 hectares of terrestrial habitat within the constructed valley, and the enhancement of 14 hectares of aquatic habitat. The new river mouth will remove the flood risk to 240 hectares of land.

CORKTOWN COMMON

Toronto, Canada
Toronto has several parks that will help connect the public with the environment. The Corktown Common Park will offer a diverse range of experiences and both views of the city and natural habitat. The park contains playgrounds, a splash pad, and an athletic field. Moreover, the park is home to over 700 trees and thousands of shrubs, groundcovers and aquatic plants. The ecological richness of the park will aid in plant and animal biodiversity. Additionally, the marsh will provide both an onsite storm water management system and a habitat for birds, amphibians, and insects.