Mesa high school seniors design monsoon storm drainage system

MESA, Ariz. (FOX 10) - Not every high schooler would care about the functionality of a city, but Kyle Kuehne and Zach Schally aren't your average teenagers.

The two Red Mountain High students approached the City of Mesa Transportation Department last year with an idea to reduce road flooding during monsoon season.

It was music to the ears of Bill McLeod who says collaborating with the two now-senior students brought a breath of fresh air to the department.

"I love working with them because they bring a lot of new ideas into it," he said. "They haven't been squeezed into the box that the adults get squeezed into they have a lot more ideas to share."

Zach and Kyle say identifying the problem was easy.

"Preventing large trash and debris from getting through and into the storm system like plastic bags, palms any other litter," Keen said.

They also had their work cut out for them.

"Once every year, each system has to be flushed out and we actually watched a video that they gave us about it and flushing it out was really gross, so I was surprised just how much trash gets into the system that we currently have," Schally said.

But after much trial and error, the boys succeeded, creating a system that efficiently collects waste before it can become a messier, larger problem.

The two say they hope to inspire their peers to bring their ideas to the table.

"It was really fun to do, we went to 'epics' and we won third place with that and seeing all the other groups there, we won third place and it made me feel really great," Schally said.