Chattanooga Public Works revamps city’s infrastructure

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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — The city of Chattanooga is working toward making your neighborhood greener.

Chattanooga’s Department of Public Works showcased its newest green infrastructure initiative Friday. The city’s goal is to restore the natural water cycle in developed areas and improve water quality.

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As the city of Chattanooga grows and develops, more of the natural elements of the city diminish.

Now, Public Works is working to improve the city’s infrastructure with an environmentally conscience frame of mind.

“This is the change in the way that we manage storm water,” city engineer Bill Payne said. “Before this project we just had a lot of asphalt behind us. We had pipes that would just take that water to the ditches, and ultimately it made its way all the way to the Tennessee River. So with this project we’re able to take that. And this water now is going to be, will infiltrate into the ground and get filtration.”

Currently, the stormwater drains into the creeks and rivers, with all the pollutents it picks up on the way.

“That’s not the city that we want to be in and so we figured out a way to change that,” Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke said.

The new project will plant more trees, restore wetlands and lay permeable pavement, which allows water to filter through a stone drainage system underneath the road.

“We live in a city of creators, people who are able to find new solutions to the problems that face us. And I am proud to say that our department of public works are some of these creators,” Berke said.

The city wants to focus on positively affecting the people who live in these neighborhoods, as well, especially those who have been dealing with poor drainage and flooding for years.

“Your work here really does change the lives of the people that live here,” Berke said.

Mayor Berke says in six months, he wants this infrastructure to be standard in all Chattanooga neighborhoods.

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Angela joined the News 12 team in November of 2017 as the weekend sports anchor and reporter. Angela is a proud member of an Army family, which means she has hometowns all over the Eastern Seaboard. Most recently, she calls Peachtree City, Georgia, home, where she graduated from Trinity Christian School and spent her free time driving her purple golf cart. She then headed to Milledgeville, Georgia, to attend Georgia College and State University. A proud Bobcat, Angela graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BA in Mass Communication and represented her December 2016 class as one of three valedictorians. Angela comes to the Scenic City from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, where she worked at the NBC affiliate, WMBF News. Before the big move, she worked as Georgia College's Sports Information Assistant, which let her get paid to be the Bobcats' biggest fan. It all started in Savannah, Georgia, though, where she interned for SAV's number one station, WTOC. When she's not working, you can find Angela watching the New York Giants, Rangers or basically any other game that's on. She also loves traveling, hiking and exploring new places, all with her camera in hand. If you have any story ideas, big or small, feel free to reach out to her on Facebook and Twitter, or email her at amoryan@wdef.com."