Structural & Non-Structural Best Management Practices
Stormwater management facilities are designed to manage the quantity (peak flow rate) and quality of stormwater. These facilities are commonly referred to as Best Management Practices (BMPs), and include structural and non-structural BMPs:
- Structural BMPs are built into the landscape to manage stormwater runoff from urban areas. Common stormwater BMPs include dry detention ponds (these are normally dry, and fill up with runoff during rain events and then are dry again), wet ponds (these are normally wet, and the water level rises during rain events and then goes back down to the normal pond depth).
- Non-Structural BMPs include the development and implementation of policies and procedures that serve to reduce the impacts of stormwater runoff. This can include ordinances that require tree and/or stream buffer preservation, as well as public education and outreach programs designed to teach citizens the importance of keeping household chemicals, solvents, paint, etc., under cover and away from stormwater.
These BMPs manage both the quality and the quantity of stormwater runoff and are required on land development projects to prevent the increase in runoff from causing damage to downstream properties and streams. More information about these BMPs and how they help filter pollutants out of runoff can be found on the Virginia Water Resources Research Center’s BMP Clearinghouse website.
New stormwater BMPs that are required as part of a development project are inspected by the designer, the contractor and the City before they are considered complete. All BMPs must be regularly inspected and documented by the property owner. And when warranted, the property owner must also perform maintenance. BMP maintenance includes both routine maintenance and corrective maintenance.