Water Quality Management

Protecting water quality by reducing the effects of
urbanization in stormwater runoff.

water quality managementWildlands Engineering strives to enhance the water quality of streams, lakes, and wetlands through many different but complimentary ways. Stormwater quality management involves capturing and treating stormwater runoff in order to reduce the concentration of pollutants entering receiving waterways. Pollutant reduction is achieved by installing best management practices (BMP) at strategic locations throughout a watershed. BMPs can be structural, such as rain gardens or constructed wetlands, or non-structural, such as preserving riparian stream buffers and disconnecting impervious areas. Wildlands Engineering is involved with stand-alone BMP design projects, watershed restoration projects with BMPs as one of several ecological design elements, and post-construction storm water control programs.

When dealing with a watershed restoration project, finding the proper location and selecting the right BMP is crucial. Wildlands Engineering utilizes GIS data, field reconnaissance, and pollutant loading modeling software to find the location with the most critical pollutant source. Selecting the type of BMP is more than merely a cookbook approach; adjacent land uses, viewsheds, utilities, and public perception are all considered during the selection process. For urban projects where the site is already identified, site constraints require a creative yet value engineered design solution.

Nutrient strategy rules, such as the Neuse Rules and the Jordan Lake Rules, target specific pollutants within their watersheds. Wildlands Engineering identifies sites and installs effective and cost-conscious BMPs within targeted watersheds that adhere to the nutrient strategy rules. Establishing a riparian buffer and excluding cattle are usually two key BMPs in a comprehensive nutrient reduction approach. Wildlands Engineering works with clients to pinpoint nutrient offset opportunities for their specific projects.

Wildlands Engineering assists municipalities with implementing post-construction storm water control programs as part of the NPDES Phase II Stormwater Program requirements. Establishing a comprehensive stormwater management plan is necessary to achieve lower pollutant concentrations in stormwater runoff. Wildlands Engineering serves as an integral partner during a broad range of municipal storm water quality projects, from robust watershed planning studies to detailed Best Management Practice (BMP) retrofit design and construction projects.