The Hydrology of Urban Runoff Quality Management

by Larry A. Roesner, Camp Dresser & McKee Inc, Maitland, United States,
Edward H. Burgess, Camp Dresser & McKee Inc, Maitland, United States,
John A. Aldrich, Camp Dresser & McKee Inc, Maitland, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Water Resources Planning and Management and Urban Water Resources


Recent regulatory requirements to reduce pollutant discharges from municipal storm sewer systems have intensified the need for approaches to developing design parameters, such as the selection of a design storm, which can be applied to urban stormwater quality management facilities. Examination of six U.S. cities in areas with widely varying climatic conditions reveals that most rainfall occurs during small storms. Hydrologic simulations using long-term rainfall records of these areas indicate that a reasonable design storm is on the order of the 1-month to 4-month storm, and a unit storage volume of roughly 0.2 to 0.9 inches will provide effective pollutant capture. Detention basins which capture these smaller storms can be provided to control urban stormwater pollutants. It may be possible to retrofit existing flood control basins for this purpose; however, water quality control basins employ a significantly different storage strategy and should serve relatively large (typically over 50 acres) areas.

Subject Headings: Quality control | Storms | Water storage | Urban development | Runoff | Stormwater management | Storm sewers | Building design

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