Tag Archives: rain garden

Natural Systems Engineering’s Kyle Thomas Quoted in Long Island’s Newsday

Natural Systems Engineering’s Principal, Kyle Thomas, was quoted for this Newsday (New York) newspaper article on green stormwater management.   The story describes how the Nassau County municipalities of North Hempstead, Great Neck Plaza and Floral Park have released their 2017 Stormwater Management Reports calling for the management of stormwater water in an eco-friendly manner.  Thomas was interviewed to provide a somewhat technical perspective on what management of stormwater in a green fashion actually means.


A Village of Great Neck Plaza street sweeper

Grace Episcopal Porous Asphalt and Rain Gardens after 1+ Year

Green infrastructure consisting of porous asphalt and rain gardens was constructed at the Grace Episcopal Church in Syracuse, New York in 2013.  The project was funded by Onondaga County’s award-winning Save the Rain program.  The project was designed by Natural Systems Engineering and constructed by Lan-Co Companies, East Syracuse, New York.  The photographs below were taken in the Summer of 2014, 1 year following construction.

View of Grace Episcopal Church Porous Asphalt lot from Madison Street

View of Grace Episcopal Church Porous Asphalt lot from Madison Street

Natural Systems Engineering Featured in Short Enterprises’ “Startup Insider”!

The August 29th edition of Short Enterprises‘ “Startup Insider” features Natural Systems Engineering.  The article discusses NSE’s contribution to the cleanup of Onondaga Lake through our green infrastructure projects and also presents our work in renewable energy.  NSE’s designs of green roof, bioretention areas, porous pavements, stormwater infiltration planters (see photograph), green roofs, and rainwater harvesting systems are featured.  NSE’s design of a geothermal heating and cooling system for an urban dwelling is also highlighted.

Stormwater Infiltration Planter

Stormwater Infiltration Planter

Green Infrastructure Makes Business Sense

Photo Credit: The Icehouse

Photo Credit: Stormwater Magazine, May 2014 and The Icehouse

The May 2014 Issue of Stormwater Magazine contains an excellent article on page 44 entitled “Exploring New Partners to Green Our Urban Landscapes.”  The article describes how incorporating green infrastructure (GI) into site development can yield a return on investment.  Some of the examples cited in the article include:

  • The visual amenity afforded by a green roof incorporated into an apartment complex in Boylston MA resulted in an increase in rent of between $300 and $500 a month for those units that overlooked the green roof.
  • the DECREASE in the amount of frost heave in porous pavements in Chicago, IL when compared with conventional paved surfaces has resulted in a longer lifespan for the installations making porous pavement the lower cost alternative.
  • green roofs double the lifespan of conventional roofs thus incurring savings in roof replacement dollars over a 40 year lifespan.

These examples don’t even consider the possible benefits available through various subsidies for such technology nor consider the relative offset in costs where regulations or ordinances would require stormwater management, whether through GI or conventional measures anyway.  More detailed information is contained NRDC’s 2013 report “The Green Edge: How Commercial Property Investment in Green Infrastructure Creates Value” discussed in our January 31, 2014 blog post.

Natural Systems Engineering and Spectra Engineering Team wins County Green Design Contract!

On April 7, 2014, the team of Spectra Engineering (Syracuse, New York) and Natural Systems Engineering was notified of award for RFP No. 13-3330-002 – Green Project Design Professional Services for Onondaga County, New York.  The project will involve the design of “green streets” under the County’s award-winning “Save the Rain” program.

September 2011 "Save the Rain" newsletter.

Photo Credit: September 2011 Onondaga County “Save the Rain” newsletter.


Green Infrastructure Creates Value!

Check out NSE’s blog post on Syracuse Urban Properties.  We provide a local pictorial perspective on the recent NRDC report “The Green Edge: How Commercial Property Investment in Green Infrastructure Creates Value.” 


Erie Boulevard Green Infrastructure Project Completed!

Construction was completed in late 2013 of the Erie-Bruce Corp. “Save the Rain” green infrastructure project.  Natural Systems Engineering designed the bioretention area, rain garden, porous asphalt, and pervious pavers to not only achieve Onondaga County’s Save the Rain objectives with respect to combined sewer overflows (CSOs), but to mitigate drainage issues at the facility, and improve the aesthetics of the site.

Site view pre-construction:

Pre-construction 007




Construction of Porous Asphalt Complete at Grace Episcopal Church

On August 9, 2013, the construction of the porous asphalt parking lot was complete at Grace Episcopal Church located at 819 Madison St. in Syracuse, New York. The new lot will mitigate the combined sewer overflows, reducing the runoff by 252,126 gallons per year based on the annual rainfall in Onondaga County. The rain garden along side of the church will be planted in the near future.

IMG_20130812_140816_296 IMG_20130812_140903_101 IMG_20130812_140951_904

Construction Continues at Grace Episcopal Church

The green infrastructure construction is continuing at the Grace Episcopal Church located at 819 Madison St. in Syracuse NY. Today, August 5, 2013, the construction began on the rain garden portion of the project as pictured below. A grant from Onondaga County’s Save the Rain program is funding this construction to help mitigate stormwater runoff using green infrastructure. This program funds a variety of construction projects such as building green roofs, rain gardens, bioretention areas and porous pavement.