Friday, September 18, 2009

What Are Stormwater Infrastructures?

Q. Can you tell me if the underground infrastructure to handle stormwater runoff and the underground sewer infrastructure are the same? Can you elaborate on some of the physical differences in these two infrastructures?
-- Trent from Park Avenue

A. The City of Richmond has three types of sewer systems that comprise our infrastructure. They are:

Stormwater-only sewer mains (pictured)
Combination (both sanitary and stormwater) sewer mains
Sanitary-only sewer mains

The stormwater-only system flow is not treated at the Wastewater Treatment Plant. Stormwater sewer mains empty at locations throughout the city into creeks and the river. The combined and sanitary-only systems flow to the treatment plant where the wastewater is treated.

While some of the stormwater that runs over land enters a storm sewer system or a combined sewer system through curb inlets, drain grates, etc., some stormwater runoff obviously enters bodies of water such as lakes, creeks, and the river.

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