Rain, Rain Go Away...to the Nature Center!

Alex Yurosko, Marketing Content Manager
August 11, 2021

Shaker Heights and the surrounding neighborhoods are no stranger to flash floods during heavy downpours like the one today, but have you ever wondered where all that water goes? It may surprise you to find out that much of that water makes its way to the Nature Center! NCSL serves as a slowing or holding zone for water which in turn helps control flooding.

Here’s how it works: If we assume NCSL is around 20 acres, and if we also assume that about 30% of the total property is defined by hillside slopes, surface lot, buildings, etc. this leaves 14 acres of lower woodland and marsh areas.

One inch of water on one acre is about 27,154.3 gallons. If we were to calculate four inches of water on the 14 acres, (a fairly conservative figure today), this comes to approximately 1,520,640.8 gallons of water being held on the grounds. That's a lot of water! The actual amount may be quite a bit more, especially when considering water is flowing through an elevated Doan Brook and being absorbed into the grounds, even on the hillside slopes which were not included in the initial calculation. This highlights the vital need for woodland and wetland areas to slow and absorb water in extreme rainfall events.

Anytime our neighborhood experiences a flash flood, we can all thank the Nature Center for removing water, holding it, and buying time for areas downstream to clear.