Indigenous Student Centre, Wilfrid Laurier University

Challenge: The Indigenous Student Centre had a vision for an outdoor teaching and ceremonial space. They wanted to grow sacred plants and food to share with community members. In order for the project to succeed they needed a convenient source of water for irrigation. During rain storms the downspout at the rear of the Centre flushed rooftop water downhill and into their backyard. The rushing water eroded the soil on the slope and sometimes made its way into their basement.
The Indigenous Student Centre at Wilfrid Laurier University is “committed to supporting and empowering our indigenous students while creating a holistic and indigenous campus community space.”
Project Details:
Location: 187 Albert Street, Waterloo, Ontario
Maximum Capacity: 4,350L
Estimated Diversion Per Year: 29,000L
Project Cost: $10,000
(cistern and pump $3,500, rain garden $6,500)
Volunteer Hours Contributed: 80
Solution: To irrigate their gardens and reduce basement leaks, the roof downspouts coming from the back of the Centre and an adjacent university building were re-directed to:
A_button2,350L Above Ground Cistern: They installed an electric pump to make watering convenient for gardeners.
B_button 2,000L Rain Garden (3m x 8m x 0.5m)that can store and infiltrate stormwater.

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