St James Episcopal Church Rain Garden

Download one-pager: 

What is polluted runoff?

Parts of the Chesapeake Bay watershed contain a high percentage of impervious cover – paved or other hard surfaces such as roofs and roadways that prevent rain water from being absorbed into the ground.  Instead, water runs along these surfaces, collecting trash and substances such as motor oil, lawn fertilizers, and pesticides.  This polluted stormwater flows into streams and rivers, where it threatens aquatic ecosystems and public health.  

Effective stormwater management, on the other hand, creates safe paths for polluted runoff to be captured and filtered through the ground before it reaches waterways.  This helps keep the environment clean and our communities healthy!

The ditch had eroded to waist deep, creating a safety hazard. Credit: Liz Peterson, St. James Episcopal Church.
A rain garden replacing the ditch prevents erosion. Credit: Liz Peterson, St. James Episcopal Church.


Project location: Mount Airy, MD

Problem: St. James Episcopal Church in Carroll County was suffering from significant erosion during storm events.  This posed not only aesthetic and water quality challenges; it also created a safety hazard for students at an adjacent daycare.

Solution:  Funding from the Chesapeake Bay Trust enabled installation of a rain garden on the site, which is designed to slow stormwater flows, provide wildlife habitat, and showcase polluted runoff solutions.  More than twenty volunteers devoted 75 hours of time for installation.

Scale: 1,000 square feet

Funding sources:  Chesapeake Bay Trust ($1,600)

Contact information:

Liz Peterson | | 240-446-1932

Key project facts

Project Type:
< $10,000
Story Focus:
Environmental Benefits, Community Engagement, Business Partnerships
Stormwater Utility Funds:
Problem Addressed:
Aesthetics, Erosion, Flooding / Drainage, Health Hazard, Runoff Pollution
Year Installed:
Before 2013
State Legislative District:
Congressional District:
Md 8th