Marlborough College Malaysia Schoolyard Naturalization
Twenty years ago, our team worked on the first natural wastewater design concept for a Themepark which flowed via a settlement forebay, through a natural aerobic filtering system made of bullrushes and gravel (to capture phosphates) and then through to a 10 km long sand bed before returning to the groundwater system. It was designed to serve up to 25,000 guests per day. We have since provided a biofiltration system for a Grass-fed Cattle farm, using microbes to break down pollutants formed in the manufacturing process wastewater. The water continues through a sand filter and UV light system before returning contaminate-free back into the groundwater ecosystem. We have also designed water ecosystems for clients in Canada using stormwater forebays to extend stream flow from a 4 month period in the spring to year round.
One of the most successful biofilter projects can be found at Dockside Green, designed by Perkins + Will and owned by Vancity Credit Union in Victoria, where a bioswale which filters the developments sewer sludge is a part of the enhanced landscape at the front entrance to the living units. Future technologies are being developed to not only clean the water of the sewage process but to use the solid waste to create energy as illustrated by this treatment plant design by Janicky Bioenergy of Seattle and funded by the Gates Foundation. We continue to design biofilter and naturalization projects which illustrate to communities how stormwater and wastewater can be naturally cleaned in our pro bono projects for Marlborough College and Carehaven Orphanage.
At Marlborough College Malaysia a water habitat demonstration garden is designed to provide a stimulating natural environment for learning and playing. Leading Malaysian naturalist Vincent Chow provided invaluable assistance in transforming what was once a barren yard, between 3 existing primary classrooms into a naturalized area, brimming with life.
The design features rainwater harvesting, an aerating waterfall, an 85m long meandering stream, small frog ponds and a 170 sm pond, as well as habitats for native butterflies, insects and birds. Access platforms at water's edge, a weather station, composting station, garden plots and an outdoor classroom provide opportunities for hands on learning in a natural environment. Project design with Exhale Group in Malaysia. (Project Description by Carol-Anne Coulter)