Mitigating Stormwater Runoff In Urban Business Districts Using Aqua-Pores
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Type of WorkText
ProgramDoctor of Engineering
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Site constraints in Urban Business Districts (UBDs) have prevented the use of many stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) that mitigate runoff in less restricted district. Without these mitigation devices, small yet frequent storms can generate enough runoff to purge sewer networks and convey 80% of the pollutants that enter waterbodies in a phenomenon referred to as the "first-flush." This study focuses on developing a BMP device for UBDs that can intercept and infiltrate the first 3/4" of runoff that is usually associated with the "first-flush." To that end, the study develops permeable concrete cylindrical inserts called Aqua-Pores. These Aqua-Pores are inserted into a slightly modified concrete curb to channel water into an aggregate base to attenuate runoff as it infiltrates into the subgrade. An Excel based software using American Association of State Highway and Transportation Official's (AASHTO's) 1986/1993 design manual was developed to evaluate and verify the design life of the new profile. Concurrently, physical models of varying dimension and makeup of Aqua-Pores were built and tested in different environmental and loading conditions. An optimal aggregate size, shape and placement of Aqua-Pores was identified and half scale models of road sections were built based on construction specifications developed. The stormwater runoff mitigation of the final assembly was then evaluated using the Environmental Site Design Unified Stormwater Sizing Criteria as well as a fully-integrated stormwater modeling software called HydroCAD. The performance in various site and soil conditions was evaluated on selected sites throughout the country. Calculation results verified the effectiveness of the design in intercepting the first 0.75" of runoff. The final device was found to supporting groundwater recharge, reducing peak runoff volume and increasing the time of concentration. A Life-Cycle Cost Analysis compared the device with a completely permeable road section and found it to have a substantially lower cost. The result is a roadway profile that channels, attenuates and infiltrates through its profile stormwater from 80% storms and mitigates runoff from larger storms. Future works may include developing the reconstruction profile for that generates revenue through conduit fees under sidewalks that breaks transportation agency finance dependency.