Wednesday marked the ribbon-cutting for the MSD Clifton Heights Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Basin. Built into a grassy hillside next to the Mellwood Arts and Entertainment Center, the 7 million gallon basin will capture and store wastewater and stormwater during rain events and gradually release it back into the sewer system when treatment capacity is available.
MSD Executive Director Tony Parrott said the basin will help protect Beargrass Creek and the neighborhood from combined sewer overflows while also offering a park-like setting.
Councilman Bill Hollander emphasized the value of the basin to the area and the community’s support throughout the project.
The basin is mostly underground and invisible to the public. The hillside covering the part of the basin is an unmowed meadow. A mowed grassy flat area at the bottom of the hillside provides a place for the neighbors to enjoy the park-like setting. A wetlands area contains a mix of 25 diverse native meadow plant species providing pollinator habitat and erosion control.
Underground storage is part of MSD’s larger endeavor to prevent wastewater from overflowing into Louisville’s waterways. MSD has recently completed – or is close to completing the last four of ten basins.
• Logan Street CSO Basin, operational December 2017, complete.
• Clifton Heights CSO Basin, operational December 2018, wrapping up site work.
• Shawnee Park CSO Basin, operational March 2019, site work continues.
• Portland CSO Basin, operational date of November 2019, construction continues.