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Stormwater Management Services in West Chester, PA

West Chester, PA Stormwater Management Firm

By now many people have at least heard the phrase “stormwater management”, but most people still do not know what it means. Simply stated stormwater management is the management of stormwater. More specifically, stormwater management is the control of surface runoff that occurs during a rainfall event. When it rains, rainwater lands on the ground, depending on the ground surface (lawns, pavement, etc.) the ground will initially absorb the rainwater, however as the ground’s capacity to absorb rainwater diminishes the rainwater becomes runoff. As the term runoff implies the rainwater runs off of the ground surface, directed by gravity and travels down slope. The runoff accumulates and increases in velocity and as it does it begins to cause flooding and erosion. This is where stormwater management comes into play. In its existing condition land has over time conditioned itself to contend with rainfall events and only in larger rainfall events does flooding and erosion occur. However, when someone proposes improvements to the land, the improvements have an adverse effect on the land’s ability to absorb and convey the additional runoff that will occur.

Why is this? It is relatively simple to understand. Improvements to land typically consists of replacing pervious land cover (grass, meadows, woods, etc.) with impervious land cover (roofs, pavement, patios, etc.). Pervious land cover has a greater capacity to absorb rainwater and therefore runoff does not begin right away. Replacing pervious land cover with impervious ground cover results in runoff occurring almost immediately. With runoff occurring at the beginning of a rain event there will be an increase in the volume of runoff and also an increase in the velocity of the runoff. These two increases result in an increase in flooding and erosion. To address these increases stormwater management practices are designed and constructed as part of site improvements.

While it may now be simple to understand why site improvements increase runoff, the design of stormwater management controls is not so simple. But have no fear, Padula Engineering is just a phone call away.

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Stormwater Management Engineers in West Chester, PA

Infiltration bed, rain garden, drywell, underground retention basin, these are just some of the options available to you when “you need stormwater management”. Which one is right for you? If you don’t know, you don’t have to. Call Padula Engineering, we will review your improvement plans with you, review your options, and help you choose the best stormwater management design for your specific project.

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