Yes, we can “build” a natural environment.

Today we had a chance to visit one of Albany’s sustainable development projects.

Talking Walking Garden means “sound” of waterfalls.

The 60-acre Talking Water Gardens is an engineered water treatment wetland right in the City of Albany. The Project was built in 2010 thru a partnership by the cities of Albany and Millersburg with metals manufacturer ATI.

The man-made wetland has various benefits: restore riparian forest and wetlands through plantings of native species; reduce water temperature, or excess thermal load (ETL) to protect sensitive fish habitat; naturally aerate and treat water to improve water quality by reducing pollutant levels, including the removal of nitrogen and phosphorus; promote wildlife habitat; create a living laboratory that brings wetland science to students and visitors about responsible water reclamation and environmental sustainability; and create a new natural attraction, among others.

There are many varieties of wetland plants at Talking Water Gardens including emergent aquatic plants that cast a shadow over the water for a cooling effect, as well as submerged and floating vegetation.

Inspired by the environment, the wetland cells mimic the cleansing and cooling processes that occur in nature, returning treated water safely back to the Willamette River.
The Weeping Wall is one of the many water features at the site. It is situated in the former Simpson plywood mill where a water cascading can be seen over a portion of the mill’s original loading dock that was left standing.

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