When students return in August, campus will look very different. And when it rains, they'll know why.
Gone will be the days of flooding on Locust Street in front of Ambrose Hall, standing water near Rohlmann, and most of all: Lake Cosgrove.
Over this summer, the physical plant is undertaking a massive storm water improvement project. The plan to alleviate flooding in that section of campus has been in the works for more than 10 years. Money was secured for the $1.85 million project from the university, the City of Davenport, and through a grant from the Watershed Improvement Board of the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship.
Retention tanks will be installed under the Cosgrove Parking Lot and have the capacity to hold 1,010,000 gallons of storm water.
So how much is a million gallons? The U.S. Geological Survey breaks it down like this: 1 million gallons is approximately the equivalent of 20,000 baths at 50 gallons each. It can also be expressed as 3.1 acre-feet or 135,000 ft3.
If, during an extreme weather event, the detention tanks fill up, the water will travel through a 48-inch underground overflow pipe that runs north and south between Cosgrove and Ambrose halls. The water will then gradually disperse into the swale between Rohlmann and Hayes halls. Extreme weather events have occurred in past years and resulted in the notorious parking lot floods.
Several trees were removed from the swale area, as seen from this photo, but Physical Plant Director Jim Hannon '84 said that was a necessary step to grade the land. All the trees will be replaced, and Hannon is working with the city arborist to plant a variety of trees, some of which will be donated to the university, once the construction is completed later this summer.Throughout the project, the Communications and Marketing Office will post photos online of what's going on. Check back often; new pictures are posted nearly every day!