$1.4M stormwater upgrades on deck for Cheney Stadium parking lot

Tacoma City Council is scheduled to vote Tuesday on a resolution to formally accept a $1 million grant from the Washington State Department of Ecology to help pay for a stormwater improvement project at Cheney Stadium.

According to documents prepared by city staff, the project will retrofit approximately two acres of an existing parking lot with porous asphalt and landscaping improvements. Cheney Stadium is located at the headwaters of Leach Creek and Chambers Creek, and the area has been selected by the city to be a demonstration site for stormwater management and sustainable design. In addition, the city hopes Cheney Stadium will provide an opportunity to spread the water quality message to thousands of baseball fans each year. The nearly $1.5-million project is scheduled to begin before the end of this year and be completed by the end of 2014. If councilmembers approve the resolution, the city will contribute $487,000 in matching funds from the city’s surface water fund.

The parking lot at Cheney Stadium has recently undergone major infrastructure improvements.

In May, a similar stormwater project on the site earned the city a silver certification award from Greenroads, a sustainability rating system for roadway projects that encourages the use of holistic design and construction practices that are above and beyond conventional practice for environmental stewardship and social responsibility. Tacoma’s Clay Huntington Way, the north entrance of Cheney Stadium formerly known as Cheyenne Street, was the focus of a low-impact development project that used porous asphalt to reduce the amount of runoff pollution by allowing rainwater to soak into the ground naturally. In addition, a portion of the south parking lot was also upgraded with porous asphalt and landscaping islands. Two rain gardens, low-maintenance plants and more than 100 new trees also help filter rainwater and keep it from carrying polluted runoff downstream. The project, which began in September and was completed in March, aims to help to refill groundwater supplies and improve stormwater quality in Tacoma’s Flett Creek Watershed. The project also added 10-foot-wide sidewalk and energy-efficient LED streetlights from 19th Street to the north ticket entrance at the ballpark to increase pedestrian safety, widened the roadway to include shared bicycle lane markings, installed bicycle racks at the north ticket entrance, and installed electric vehicle charging stations in the north parking lot.

City Council is scheduled to vote on the resolution to formally accept the $1 million grant during its meeting on Tues., Oct. 16 at 5 p.m. in City Council Chambers on the first floor of the Tacoma Municipal Building, located 747 Market Street. A copy of the agenda and meeting materials is available online here. Meetings are streamed live online at tvtacoma.com and broadcast live on TV Tacoma.

The parking lot at Cheney Stadium has recently undergone major infrastructure improvements. (IMAGE COURTESY CITY OF TACOMA)