Rain Garden Comes to Public Works

Creating a Rain Garden at DPW

Spring 2010 saw the completion of a rain garden adjacent to the Public Works' visitor parking lot at 147 Hampshire Street.

A rain garden is a man-made planted depression designed to contain, filter and soak up stormwater runoff from rooftops, driveways, walkways or basement sump pumps and allows the water to soak back into the ground.  Rain gardens capture stormwater before it runs off of hard surfaces and collects harmful substances such as road salt, pet waste, heavy metals, fertilizers and oils before draining to catch basins where it may find its way to local rivers like the Charles River and Alewife Brook.    

A rain garden intercepts the initial runoff called the “first flush.”  The first flush contains the greatest concentration of pollutants.  Capturing, treating and slowing down stormwater runoff through a natural process instead of conveying it directly to the stormwater drain can prevent localized flooding, improve water quality and protect and conserve aquatic ecosystems. 

Please visit the Stormwater Management section of our website for more stormwater management resources.

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Dept of Public Works

147 Hampshire St
Cambridge MA 02139

Phone:617.349.4800
TDD:617.499.9924

Hours of Service


Monday: 8:30am-8pm
Tuesday-Thursday: 8:30am-5pm
Friday: 8:30am-12pm
24 hour emergency
telephone 617.349.4862

OWEN O'RIORDAN,
COMMISSIONER