Stormwater Management is Crucial to A Successful Project
Stormwater management is a large and ever-growing sector of the environmental and civil engineering industry. It includes all aspects of water quality, quantity, and distribution that are associated with precipitation events. Stormwater runoff from urban environments can carry a number of contaminants into receiving waters. These include oil from roads or parking lots, pesticides used in gardening activities, fertilizers from lawns and gardens, litter from streets or yards as well as animal waste products such as pet droppings left on sidewalks. If stormwater from your project is not managed properly, it can flood not only your project, but downstream properties as well.
Most municipalities have stormwater management regulations in place to minimize the impact of storm runoff on the surrounding environment, with an ever growing emphasis on water quality.
Water quality devices include but are not limited to:
- detention ponds
- retention ponds
- infiltration trenches or basins
- permeable pavement surfaces
The effectiveness of a stormwater management plan is based on the hydraulics and water quality of the runoff leaving your site. A detention pond is typically required so that the post-construction storm runoff is no greater than the pre-construction storm runoff. Impervious surfaces on your project, such as pavement, concrete, roofs, etc., increase the amount of stormwater runoff; these surfaces do not absorb water the way grass/soil does.
So what does this mean for you? In a nutshell, cost and liability. Ponds take up valuable land, and the storm drainage systems are pretty expensive. It's critical that you select a civil engineer with the experience to not over or under design your pond and storm drainage system. Over design, while safer, can cost a ton of money. And of course, under design can cost you even more by way of lawsuits and delays with your project due to flooding.
There is much more to stormwater management than we can fit into this article. Please don't hesitate to call us if you have questions!