What is Drain Smart?
Drain Smart is an engaging public-education / environmental program that uses art to communicate the function and importance of local storm drains. It gives artists the opportunity to express themselves via semi-permanent public art in a series of a small-scale outdoor storm drain murals. The art also serves to educate the public on local water quality protection.
Why Storm Drains?
In most cities across the United States, municipal storm drains are a direct link to the nearest streams, rivers or lakes. When it rains, storm water flows over parking lots, lawns and other surfaces. This moving water works like a magnet that attaches to everything in its path. Paper and plastic items, grease and oil, brake dust, anti-freeze, fertilizer, yard and pet waste and many other assorted items of litter are all carried into our storm drains when it rains. This polluted water travels untreated through this system before being discharged into our local waterbodies.
Many residents have a misconception that the storm drains are part of our sanitary sewer system that lead to the wastewater treatment plant, which leads them to misuse storm drains--thinking it's a "safe" way to dispose of waste. When pollutants are disposed of via storm drains, they end up directly in our waterways.