American Society of Civil Engineers

OHSU Stormwater Management Plan: A Unique Approach to Stormwater Management for Campus Facilities Using Low Impact Development

by Michelle M. Wittenbrink, P.E., (Project engineer, Otak, Inc, 17355 SW Boones Ferry Road, Lake Oswego, OR 97035 E-mail:, Kevin J. Timmins, P.E., (Project engineer, Otak, Inc, 17355 SW Boones Ferry Road, Lake Oswego, OR 97035 E-mail:, and Quinn L. Donnelly, (Engineering Designer, Otak, Inc, 17355 SW Boones Ferry Road, Lake Oswego, OR 97035 E-mail:
Section: Watershed Retrofit with LID, pp. 1-10, (doi:

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Document type: Conference Proceeding Paper
Part of: Low Impact Development for Urban Ecosystem and Habitat Protection
Abstract: In 2007, Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) developed a Comprehensive Stormwater Management Plan for their main campus located in Portland, Oregon. The plan strategy employed a unique and unconventional approach for improving the health of campus watersheds. Low Impact Development (LID) techniques such as ecoroofs, bioretention facilities, and rainwater harvesting were utilized to reduce the runoff from impervious areas including rooftops, parking lots, patios, sidewalks, and roadways. Minimizing the stormwater flows from impervious surfaces and the potential pollutant load associated with the runoff will both improve the health of the watershed and provide relief for the City of Portland’s already taxed combined sewer system. Through full implementation of this plan, OHSU could realize up to a 21 percent reduction in impervious area, significantly reducing stormwater runoff leaving the campus. The plan included detailed descriptions of each CIP with a project summary, example photographs, ranking criteria scores and a preliminary cost estimate on a single sheet for quick reference and comparison. LID techniques recommended by this plan are meant to compliment the vision of OHSU and its desire to advance to the forefront of sustainability and green design. This project provides an alternative to traditional methods of managing stormwater on campus facilities through the creative implementation of LID, and is a model for other campuses and cities to follow for diverging from conventional stormwater management practices.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Stormwater management