Residents Can Help Beautify Neighborhoods and Reduce Localized Flooding When They “Adopt A Drain”

Residents Can Help Beautify Neighborhoods and Reduce Localized Flooding When They “Adopt A DrainAdopt A Drain Logo

The City of Champaign invites residents and property owners to help keep their neighborhoods beautiful and prevent potential localized street flooding by participating in the City’s new “Adopt A Drain” program.  This new program allows volunteers to sign up to “adopt” storm drain(s) that participants agree to help keep clean of leaves and debris.  Volunteers in the Adopt A Drain program are simply asked to clean their adopted drain(s) four times a year and before forecasted heavy rains.

“We know that several of our residents are already helping out by keeping their neighborhood storm drains clear of fallen leaves or litter,” said Kris Koester, Administrative Services Manager. “We appreciate those already helping out and hope that this new program will encourage even more people to get involved.  Keeping storm drains clear of leaves and debris can really make a big difference in how well the City’s stormwater system functions.”

Signing up to “Adopt A Drain” is easy and residents and groups are encouraged to sign up on the City’s website at On the website volunteers can learn more about the program and review an interactive map to select the storm drain(s) they’d like to adopt. After signing up, volunteers even have the opportunity to name their drain.

There are more than 12,000 storm drains in Champaign and keeping all the drains clear can be a challenge, especially during heavy spring rains and when the leaves turn in the fall.  Champaign Public Works continuously works to keep City roadways and storm drains free of debris by operating of the City’s as much as possible.  Public Works crews also respond to public service requests to clean out storm drains, and proactively cleans drains in areas traditionally prone to localized flooding prior whenever a storm event is forecast.

Several cities across the country have similar programs including Seattle, Houston, and Nashville. Champaign is the first city in downstate Illinois to implement this program, joining Algonquin, Itasca, and Naperville, where the programs have been very successful.