IOWA CITY, IOWA
After the floods of 2008 devistated a large portion of the Iowa River including the Art Campus at the University of Iowa, a master plan was created to reimagine the relationship between the river and its surrounding landscape. The plan implanted a three-pronged approach. The first was a “defensible” measure with the addition of a large earth form to protect building assets. The second and third were “soft” strategies that captured water from surrounding areas and infiltrated it back into the ground to reduce the amount of runoff deposited in the river. Finally, areas were created to invite the river into the landscape during flood events to increase the capacity of stormwater the river could handle. This strategy can be seen as a prototype for water management that if replicated on a regional level could manage increased flooding threats in the Iowa River corridor. Theodore Hoerr was Principal at Balmori while leading the design of this project. Images courtesy of Balmori.