February 6, 2024
Maintenance, it seems, is always on our minds, and also frequently discussed in training here at CCLC, so we were excited to hear that our colleague Dave Hirschman was writing about planning for stormwater BMP maintenance in his blog this month. Dave is not only an astute observer, but also a great writer, and we appreciate the opportunity to share his blog with our audience. Enjoy! And please stay tuned for some additional maintenance-focused blog posts this winter.
–Beth Ginter, CCLC Executive Director
We have always known that long-term maintenance was part of the picture for stormwater BMPs. However, for many years, that notion was an annoying rattle in the background as we’ve gone about the often more gratifying work to design and install BMPs. Now, maintenance is front-and-center with any project. Most practitioners would agree that lack of adequate maintenance is unacceptable, as the result is not good for the site, for water quality, or for the property owners and public. Poor long-term maintenance also represents a huge betrayal of the initial investments of money, time, creativity, and energy we put into planning, designing, and installing the practices.
The movement to increase the complexity and diversity of species in our stormwater landscapes –bioretention, rain gardens, buffers, filter strips, and other vegetated practices – comes with additional maintenance implications. We want these practices to treat water quality, as is their fundamental intent, but also contribute to the ecosystem functions of the surrounding site, neighborhood, and region. . .