Greenroads Certified Bronze

Bellingham Raingardens: York & Forest Streets



The project upgrades intersections along York & Forest Streets in the downtown business district with stormwater quality upgrades and selected pedestrian improvements. Improvements include native greenspace and pedestrian amenities.

Owner: City of Bellingham, WA

Design: City of Bellingham, WA

Landscaping: SvR Design Company

Contractor: Stremler Gravel

Cost: $269,561 (allocated for this street segment from the final project cost of $955,717)

Improved Area: 3,850 square feet (3 intersections, 7 corners)

Length: 0.22 mi


The City of Bellingham installed 6 raingardens (bioretention facilities) on York and Forest Streets, and upgraded pedestrian safety and accessibility with bulb-outs at select crossings in 1 other location along this segment. Over the next 20 years, the Project will:

  • Treat and control water from 18.1 acres of the downtown business district
  • Treat and control 2.2 million gallons of water from more than 7.5 acres of previously untreated pollution generating surfaces
  • Removes more than 3,700 lbs of total suspended solids (TSS).

As a small street improvements project with an overall budget of less than $1 million, 97% of York and Forest Streets remained in place and was preserved as-is with street repairs of 3,850 square feet localized only around the work areas. The City demonstrated that the pavements were in serviceable condition without expected need for maintenance within the next 5 years according to their asset management program.

Overall, the entire Bellingham Raingardens program boasts an average recycled content of more than 31.2% by weight. Recycled content was verified in the concrete sidewalk, curb and gutter and inlet splash block materials. The City made this happen by specifying in the contract that 50% recycled content by weight was allowed for aggregate replacement in the sidewalk materials and bioretention facilities and allowed up to 20% recycled asphalt pavement (RAP) in the pavement materials.

For an example copy of the specifications, please contact the City of Bellingham Public Works. Read more about this project here.

Forest Street Raingardens at York are huge!

York & Forest - closeup view of native vegetation and inlet

Pedestrian improvements for ADA at corner of York & Forest

Raingarden at Forest & York

York & Forest Raingarden pair at a glance.

Raingarden improvements side by side at Garden & Champion St.