Detention ponds have many benefits and if not maintained properly, can incur great costs. Detention ponds are most often required at a development due to a large amount of impervious cover generated by the facility. That impervious cover sheds water much faster than the natural landscape. Therefore, detention ponds must be installed to regulate stormwater from leaving your site too quickly and causing greater problems downstream. These structures also help to clean water by catching trash and debris as well as filtering out some pollutants found in stormwater.


Most often ponds are most often shallow earthern depressions but can also be extensive concrete structures as well. These ponds may have one to multiple inlets where water enters them and again, one to multiple outlets where the water can be released in a regulated manner. There may be various flow spreading structures and pilot channels that influence where the water goes in the pond. Those important outlets have necessary pieces such as drawdown pipes that are surrounded by trash racks.

Maintenance of detention ponds can most often be very simple. When small cost-effective measures are taken continuously, exorbitant costs down the road are minimized greatly. Vegetation management is the single most important task. Grass should be kept uniform in height as to protect the earthern material that makes up the walls of the pond. Roots hold the soil in place and tall, thick grass shades the soil in the heat of the summer as well as protects the grass from erosive rain events. Wall failure is a costly repair due to not protecting vegetation and wall structures. Keeping grass at a uniform height will discourage areas of stagnant water in the pond due to vegetation blocking flow.

Controlling erosion at inlets, near outlets and along walls is important as well. Detention ponds are made to catch sediment from the watershed. Sediment that has eroded from the pond only worsens the maintenance load of the pond. Keeping a healthy grass stand, not scalping while mowing and letting ponds dry before allowing equipment in will discourage erosion. Trees often are good for controlling erosion but in a pond the roots can damage underground equipment and any concrete structures therefore, tree growth should be managed.

Maintenance of the inlets and outlets will ensure the pond flows as designed. Keeping inlets and outlets as well as the associated trash racks free of mulch, trash and debris on a regular basis will help prevent drainage issues in the pond. When ponds do not drain properly, there are infrastructure problems that can arise due to water sitting in drainage piping. That water can back up in parking lots as well as sit in curb inlets. As water backs up into parking areas, there can be water infiltration in the pavement allowing cracks and potholes to form as well as the weakening of subgrade around those structures.
Detention ponds are a great stormwater management tool. Vegetation maintenance and cleaning of flow structures are quick and cost-effective techniques that can prevent catastrophic damage to your detention ponds.


Pond stabilization has been traditionally problematic in the Houston area as our soils are predominately clay below the first few feet and contain little organic material essential to the establishment and stability of long term vegetation. Houston also experiences intense rain events frequently. Poor soils and intense rain events combine to create conditions which encourage erosion of slopes and eventual slope failure. With our extensive erosion control experience, we can help with even the most difficult of ponds, employing the latest technologies to solve erosion problems.

Service Locations & Offices:


Given the changing nuances of enforcement, the growing tangle of overlapping enforcement agencies and the stiff consequences for non-compliance, our SWQM services business exists to serve Operators and Owners in Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Austin, and Ft Worth, by implementing a set of compliance services that cover all facets of SWQM compliance.


eBook – You’ve Received a Re-Permit Notice, What Next?

Learn what to do next if you have received a Notice of Stormwater Quality Requirements for your property. Harris County and the City of Houston each have a set of regulations regarding the post-construction stormwater management obligations that must be met by property owners.

  • Determine if your property is in permitable condition
  • Issues that must be resolved prior to re-permit
  • Professional Engineer Certification
  • How to avoid the cost of non-compliance

With an understanding of your requirements as a property owner or manager, this guide will go a long way towards insuring your property is compliant with stormwater quality regulations.

Get Your Stormwater Quality Permit Status Report

Stormwater quality permits are valid for 1 year and therefore require annual renewal. Fill out the form to the left and find out now if you are out of compliance and at risk of costly fines. By providing your property information we will provide you with:

  • Your compliance status
  • When your property is due for re-permit
  • Re-Permitting Guide For Property Owners & Managers

If the Stormwater Quality Permit (SWQ) permit is not renewed annually as required, and/or the stormwater quality feature is not inspected and maintained according to the SWQMP, the property Owner is out of compliance and will be subject to fines. Trust us to help keep your property in compliance.


SWQM: Why Care?

Stormwater Quality (SWQ) permitting regulations exist to improve water quality and to minimize negative impacts of development on our watersheds. Without these programs, the effects that a growing community creates would have a devastating impact on our region’s already impaired rivers, streams and bayous. Counties and cities each have their own set of regulations regarding the post-construction stormwater management obligations that must be met by property owners.

When incorporating the specifics of SWQ regulatory requirements into the design of a development, the civil engineer calculates the volume of water to be treated, creates a Stormwater Quality Management Plan SWQ and selects a stormwater quality treatment feature to fit the needs of the site. The resulting design must be approved by County or City engineers and a Stormwater Quality Permit is issued to the Owner of the property.

All of this happens before construction is permitted or commenced. On occasion, the SWQ permit and the SWQMP which guides compliance; are details the property Owner or Manager may not be fully aware of. If the SWQ permit is not renewed annually as required, and/or the stormwater quality feature is not inspected and maintained according to the SWQMP, the property Owner is out of compliance and will be subject to fines.

Some may see stormwater management as just another unnecessary and unwanted cost to construction projects or property ownership and management. But, understanding the negative effects that poor or no stormwater management is causing should be a concern to us all. It affects where we live and play. It affects our marine-based food supply. It affects our dwindling water supply.

We care. It is why we do what we do.

Why Choose Us?

Established in 2002, we provide our clients a proven, systematic approach and a reliable experienced team that can take all compliance logistical burdens off your shoulders. What could make your life simpler? One call. One point of contact. New project launches simplified. Compliance simplified. Compliance assured.

Other key reasons to choose us:

  • We provide the most appropriate, cost-effective, and innovative solutions
  • Our experience and expertise is the fundamental “product” our clients buy
  • We focus on our customer’s success
  • Our high degree of integrity
  • Our ability to customize and problem solve
  • All our field crew are OSHA 30
  • We are agents of stormwater change

If achieving the highest level of compliance while reducing risk and lowering costs is important to you, then let’s work together. We provide full turnkey stormwater management consulting and solutions. All field crew are OSHA 30 certified.

Tell us about your project and get a quick quote.