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Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments

Smart, Integrated Stormwater Management Systems - Anacostia River Watershed Water Quality Study

Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments

Chesapeake Bay

Background

Eventually draining to the Chesapeake Bay, the Anacostia River watershed is a tributary to the Potomac River and is subject to the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) “pollution diet” calling for reductions in nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment. To address these water quality requirements, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG) was awarded a grant to collaborate on a multi-jurisdictional project funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF). The goal of the project was to demonstrate the use of smart, integrated stormwater management systems for improving the performance of structural stormwater best management practices (BMPs) in the Anacostia River watershed. In particular, this project consisted of installing OptiNimbus on three existing stormwater management facilities - a wet pond in Montgomery County, Maryland; a dry pond in Prince George’s County in Maryland; and a bioswale in the District of Columbia. In particular, the study’s objectives included:

  • Accelerating the adoption of municipal green infrastructure in the Anacostia River Watershed
  • Measuring the increased sediment and nutrient removal benefits of actively managed stormwater infrastructure
  • Quantifying how forecast-based controls increase the average retention time of existing facilities
Results

This project has helped support several regional water quality initiatives, including the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) and the Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund (CBSF) Conservation Objectives, and has paved the way to accelerating the pace of achieving local water quality objectives. Preliminary findings from over a year of monitoring across rainfall, water level, nutrients, and total suspended solids (TSS) show water quality improvements through the use of adaptive controls. For detailed results, please see this published report on the project.

Fast Facts
  • Objectives

    Water Quality

  • Application

    Stormwater Ponds, Green Infrastructure

  • Products Used

    OptiNimbus

  • Project Partners

    MWCOG, Geosyntec Consultants

Project Gallery - Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments