We have curated several informative and entertaining news stories from the stormwater industry, as well as a few other items of interest. We appreciate you taking the time to read our ezine and hope that you find this stormwater related information as interesting and informative as we do.
Until next month, please work safe and stay well.
The Construction EcoServices Staff
SPECIAL NEW BULLETIN
City of Houston 2021 Stormwater Detention Regulation Changes
On January 4, 2021 the City of Houston replaced within Chapter 9 of the Infrastructure Design Manual (IDM) how stormwater detention is calculated within the City of Houston. This was announced on January 20th, 2021 and was to go into effect on February 4th, 2021, sending developers and engineers into a frenzy to get projects submitted to the county by the deadline. On January 26th, that deadline was pushed back to March 31st, 2021.
Resilient Houston was released in February 2020 after a multi-year planning and engagement process that began when Houston was selected to join the former 100 Resilient Cities program through a $1.8M grant from Shell in August 2018, at the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Harvey. In two and a half years, Houston hired a Chief Resilience Officer, developed and launched Resilient Houston, and now, one year later is formally reporting on its progress implementing the strategy through the one-year report. In September 2020, Mayor Sylvester Turner also became the Chair of the Board of Directors of Resilient Cities Network, the city-led organization that was created after 100 Resilient Cities program ended. “The City of Houston’s progress on its Resilient Houston strategy has been remarkable, especially during an unprecedented year,” said Jason Klein, Shell VP US Energy Transition Strategy.
Texas Infrastructure Gets a “C”
Texas has much to boast about but still a few things that need to be corrected. Every four years the American Society of Civil Engineers issues a “Report Card” for the nation’s infrastructure using a standard A-F grading scale. Overall, America got a C-, up from a D+ in the last report. With the report’s release, Director Thomas Smith said the nation is failing to maintain aging infrastructure at a high cost to future generations. The 17 areas assessed are aviation, bridges, dams, drinking water, energy, hazardous waste, inland waterways, levees, parks and recreation, ports, rail, roads, schools, solid waste, storm-water, transit and wastewater. Bridges were an Achilles heel for the nation, but are a saving grace that helped Texas rise to a “C.”
Big Texas Cities Have Less Land to Absorb Floods
Texas cities are expanding fast. Between 2010 and 2019, six of the 15 fastest-growing cities in the U.S. were in Texas. Bigger Texas cities mean less land to soak up rainwater, leading to increased flood risk. Add climate change to the equation and you have an even bigger flooding problem to solve. Buildings, roads, sidewalks and other city elements are impervious: they can’t soak up water like soil can. Instead, water runs off the impervious surfaces, flowing into neighboring streams and low-lying areas. Having faster and higher amounts of runoff results in more flooding, said Wonmin Sohn, an assistant professor in Michigan State University’s School of Planning, Design and Construction.
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FEATURED VIDEO CASE STUDY
STORMWATER SHORTS: LID Solutions at Work on a Multi-Use Property, During and After Tropical Storm Beta
In this video, we are taking a look at LID solutions at work during Tropical Storm Beta, a tropical storm that dropped up to 14″ of rain in some areas around Houston in just a 48-hour period of time. Construction EcoServices Vice President, David Batts, narrates on-site at the property over the course of several days, showing the LID solutions prior to the storm, during the storm and shortly after the storm.
FEATURED CASE STUDY
Low Impact Development Methods Save the Day
The design team was able to decrease the surface storage volume requirements for the property enough to not only save the project, but the development company was able to build two additional apartment buildings. For the developers, the 48 additional apartment units meant the difference between success and a cancelled project, as well as increased long-term revenue and higher property value.
smartPOND is a prepackaged, easy to install, automated water level control valve that regulates stormwater depth. smartPOND functions by rotating 90 degrees to open and close a rotary weir that is connected to an outfall pipe up to 24-inches in diameter. It is pre-programmed to hold water for 12 hours before it starts to slowly rotate over a 48-hour period to drain the batch detention pond completely. This action allows TSS to settle out of the detained water body and for the release of only the cleanest water from the top of the pond. Once the pond is empty, the bucket returns to its upright and closed position in anticipation of the next rainfall event. And, all of this, controlled via a smartphone app.
Come out and see smartPOND live, in action!
Construction EcoServices will be hosting two on-site, live demo events of our installed smartPONDs in Central Texas. Here is what you can expect:
- Watch smartPOND in action
- Happy hour meet-up after the demo at local restaurant/bar (TBD soon)
- Talk stormwater solutions with us
- Network with other local engineer colleagues
NO MORE SAND FILTERS!
Come Out and See New Automated Stormwater Detention Technology That Eliminates the Need for Sand Filters in Central Texas
Austin – North
7151 Wyoming Spring Drive
Round Rock TX 78682
Wednesday, March 24th
Austin – South
644 Lone Peak Way
Dripping Springs, TX 78620
Thursday, March 25th
IECA Virtual Connection Webinar Series:
Stormwater & Erosion Control 3.0
Join IECA with Platinum Sponsor, Convergent Water Technologies, for the IECA Virtual Connection: Stormwater and Erosion Control 3.0 Webinar Series to explore the STEPP Program, understand slope stabilization in green infrastructure projects and learn more about plant selection for revegetation sustainability. Cost: FREE Member/$50 Nonmember.
- Tuesday, March 9 | Mountain Time 11:00 – 12:00 AM
The STEPP Program: A National Performance Testing Program for the Stormwater Sector
Seth Brown – Executive Director, National Municipal Stormwater Alliance
- Tuesday, March 16 | Mountain Time 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Slope Stabilization in Green Infrastructure Projects
Dana Nunez Brown – Principal, Dana Brown and Associates
- Tuesday, March 23 Mountain Time 2:00 – 3:00 PM
Plant Breeding and Species Selection for Sustainability
Guilherme Mussi Sobral Barcellos – PGG Wrightson Turf
Pretreatment Debris Filter
Rain Guardians were developed by the Anoka Conservation District to extend the maintenance cycles of their bioretention facilities while simplifying the maintenance process. Where tradition forms a pre-treatment like forebays and grass filter strip have to be completely removed and replaced during regular maintenance, the Rain Guardian can be cleaned and ready to go in just minutes.
GOT A PROJECT? GET IN TOUCH.
We offer stormwater consulting and value-engineering services, turnkey SWPPP compliance services during construction activity, erosion control solutions for slopes and channels, and post-construction compliance services for stormwater management systems for detention and stormwater quality treatment. Need help? Contact us today.