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If you’re going downtown, you may see some colorful decorations on several storm drains. KSMU’s Adam Hammons went to see why these works of art are popping up and who’s responsible.
It’s called the Storm Drain Renewal project. No, it’s not some graffiti of a fish covering a sidewalk, but a way to spread word that storm drains lead directly to the area’s streams and rivers. The James River Basin Partnership and the city of Springfield have partnered for the project. They recruited eight students from Ozarks Technical Community College and two local artists to create 10 murals in the downtown area. Brad Davenport, an artist studying at OTC, was standing by his art next to the Springfield Brewing Company. “Anybody who’s been floating has seen trash in the river and things like that so this is one way it gets there. So this seemed like a good idea to get in there and help bring some awareness to it.”“I’m here next to Davenport’s mural on the corner of Walnut and Market where what he says is an x-ray of what goes on below the drain. On it there’s a stensil of James River with an arrow next to it to show that anything that goes into the drain, will lead to the river.”
“I wanted something that would kind of be artsy but at the same time kind of relay the message without a whole lot of thought.”
Davenport says all the murals were coated with special sealants so they can last up to three years.
According to the city, soapy water, litter, yardwaste and other pollutants can get in to storm drains and impact water quality.The storm drains downtown all lead to Jordan Creek, which leads to James River, and then on to Table Rock Lake.
Pictures of the storm drains will be on display in the First Friday Artwalk, and at Artsfest this Saturday and Sunday. They can also be seen at the Mudhouse for the rest of the month.
For KSMU News, I’m Adam Hammons.