Memorials & Museums: Trench Drain Grates in D.C

stone grates, ADA trench grates, heel proof trench drains, sidewalk trench drains,

While my daughter was in town this March, we took a weekend trip to Washington DC to see some sights. While checking out the monuments (and getting a little sentimental), I saw two interesting trench drains.

Trench Drain at the Lincoln Memorial Steps

sidewalk drains, courtyard drains, brass decorative gratesThese drains must have looked beautiful when they were originally installed at the base of the granite steps leading up to the Lincoln Memorial. Now they sport a handsome green oxidation coat, which means the original finish must have been a brilliant bronze or brass.

These 4″ wide drains are filled with dirt and sediment, an indication that they probably are not pre-sloped. (Maybe, also, an indication of the maintenance budget.) I’m not certain they are really needed here, anyway.

The monument would look nicer if these drains were put into service again. Any patriotic volunteers to help clean these out?

Trench Drain at the Native American Museum

stone grates, ADA trench grates, heel proof trench drains, sidewalk trench drains,If you appreciate Native American culture and artifacts, this museum has something for you. I was impressed with a number of aspects of the building’s architecture. The granite trench drain grates running through the courtyard and water sculpture areas, in particular, caught my eye.

These grates are the most expensive pedestrian grates I’ve seen. Let’s not even talk about the percent open space for efficient water drainage.  You can see they are ADA approved, but I’m not certain if they are heel proof. Are those holes 3/8″ diameter or smaller?

Do you have an unusual trench drain system or grate you want to share? Let us know! Send your photo and comment, and we could publish your story!

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