by Sheryl Bezak Guglielmo
Stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) were first adopted and applied to several regions of the United States in the 1970s. Since then, stormwater management has evolved dramatically.
Today, most regions across the United States have specific requirements and standards for stormwater BMPs. Properties are now subject to rigorous state and local regulatory reviews.
Over the years, DiPrete Engineering has become an expert in stormwater management and BMP design, gaining a valuable understanding of state, local and regional regulations. We navigate regulatory challenges and evolving environmental requirements; addressing them as quickly and efficiently as possible, all while combining the latest and best stormwater techniques with our clients’ vision and resources to get the best possible results.
Although stormwater management is necessary, it can often take up valuable real estate that could otherwise be used for leasable tenant areas and parking within our client’s project. DiPrete Engineering is mindful of the impact that stormwater has on real estate development. We always take this into consideration during our designs and strive to develop innovative ideas to make stormwater BMP’s more appealing to the public. Stormwater management can be integrated into public spaces, adding value to the development for its stakeholders, end users, consumers and regulatory bodies. Integrating stormwater improvements such as pervious filter materials, as part of the overall site design, rather than an after-thought can create an aesthetically pleasing and functional space.
A good example of comprehensive stormwater improvement planning is The Wilder Companies’ Garden City Center project in Cranston, Rhode Island, engineered by DiPrete Engineering. Other DiPrete Engineering project examples include the stormwater management systems at MetroEast in Warwick, RI, Dowling Village in North Smithfield, and Quonset Business Park in North Kingstown..
At Garden City Center, the DiPrete Engineering team along with John C. Carter & Company Landscape Architects, utilized its extensive stormwater design expertise to create an inviting, aesthetically pleasing and versatile public space for its tenants and consumers. For example, instead of installing nondescript impervious asphalt around the gazebo and Center Green; pervious pavers were installed, making the area suitable for customer parking and public functions. This serene spot continues to be a focal point within Garden City Center; being used for summer concerts, car shows, holiday gatherings and as a peaceful spot for visitors to take a moment to catch their breath during a busy day of shopping.
In addition to providing a much needed aesthetic upgrade, this multi-purpose parking area also serves as a stormwater management BMP for the Center Green area. Below each parking area is a layer of stone that captures and filters the stormwater, rather than utilizing the common parking lot practice of catch basins and drainage pipe. Beneath the pavers sits a 24”- 48” layer of clean stone which act as a storage and infiltration zone for stormwater run-off.
Low impact BMPs techniques such as subsurface stormwater detention eliminates the need for dedicating valuable real estate for detention ponds. To ensure proper operation, integrity and longevity of the stormwater management system a detailed operation and maintenance plan had to be prepared and adopted for Garden City Center.
At DiPrete Engineering, we are always looking for new, cost effective ways to create comprehensive and effective stormwater management programs. Our team of civil engineers, land planners, survey technicians, engineering technicians and creative designers all work together to come up with innovative, unique solutions for our clients.
The Garden City Center project is just one example of the evolved stormwater management solutions being designed and implemented by DiPrete Engineering. Effective stormwater management is essential to every major land development project and DiPrete Engineering believes it can also be designed and integrated to serve as an amenity to the development and create functional public areas.
Sheryl Bezak Guglielmo is a Project Engineer at DiPrete Engineering.