Implementing Green Infrastructure in Atlanta

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1 City of Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed Department of Watershed Management Implementing Green Infrastructure in Atlanta SESWA Southeast Regional Stormwater Seminar April 9, 2014 Jo Ann J. Macrina, P.E. Commissioner 1

2 City of Atlanta Watershed Management Serves population of 1.2 million (450,000 night) Adequate water supply and treatment capacity 2 ½ water treatment plants, 112 MGD (2 plants) Adequate wastewater treatment plant capacity 4 wastewater treatment plants, 184 MGD 6 CSO facilities Regional provider; 6 wholesale govt. customers 2,750 mi of water mains 1,900+ mi of sewer ( yrs old) 15% combined, 85% separated 1,475 positions Annual budget $595M 2

3 Watershed Management Pre 2000 Long term system under investment Failed water utility privatization Consent Orders Flawed stormwater utility fee imposed $7 million refunded 2 Wastewater Consent Decrees 100+ overflows/yr at CSO facilities 1,000 sewer spills in year 2000 Poor image Insensitive Inactive Incompetent Irresponsible 3 Department of Watershed Management

4 CSO Consent Decree Success Consent Decree issued Sept 1998, full compliance by Nov 2008 Reduced CSOs from ~100/yr to an expected average of 4/yr CSOs perform better than designed Total cost: $711M West Area CSO Tunnel Boring Machine 4

5 SSO Consent Decree Consent Decree issued Dec 1999, full compliance by July 2014 (*extension) Phased Approach to Capital Improvement Program Phase I Sewer System Evaluation Survey (1600 miles) Phase II Sewer Rehabilitation Phase III Sewer Capacity Relief Total $1.4 Billion Capital Program Preventive Maintenance Program 5

6 Post 2000 Highest W&S Rates in US Atlanta, GA 2012 Atlanta, GA ** San Diego, CA Gwinnett County, GA Columbus, OH Detroit, MI Washington, DC 2008 Water/Wastewater Rate Survey American Water Works Association Raftelis Financial Consultants, Inc. Residential User Charges 10 CCF Nashville, TN New York, NY Kansas City, MO San Antonio, TX Water Charges Wastewater Charges $0.00 $20.00 $40.00 $60.00 $80.00 $ $ $ Atlanta 2012 bills reflect approved rate increases * Seasonal water rates, weighted average of charges for 10 CCF user ** Does not include 1% Municipal Option Sales Tax 6

7 Compliance at a Price # of Spills Year Yearly Public Sanitary Sewer Spill Totals 1/1/01 8/31/13 $500,000,000 $400,000,000 $300,000,000 $200,000,000 $100,000,000 $ % decrease in number of spills to waters of the state Success! Water and Wastewater System Capital Improvements Fixed Asset Data Water Wastewater

8 Mayor Kasim Reed Commitment to Community Provide effective solutions for real issues Community involvement Take action and follow through Commitment to Sustainable Initiatives Focus on green solutions Focus on decreased carbon footprint Focus on reduced energy consumption Commitment to Environmental Protection Comply with all regulations Manage infrastructure responsibly Build partnerships with state and federal agencies 8

9 New Strategic Direction Reorganization of the Department Focus on goals and priorities Customer service Safe workplace Regulatory compliance Efficient Operations 9

10 Achieving the Goals through New Initiatives Financial flexibility with CD extension 13 year extension; longest in U.S. ( ) Approx $450M work remaining Ability to balance all needs Integrated Water Resources Data analysis Asset management Utilize technology Sustainability & Green Infrastructure 10

11 Promoting Sustainability Goal of green infrastructure mimic the natural hydrologic function preserving conservation areas reducing impervious surfaces installing aesthetically pleasing structural measures such as green roofs, vegetated swales, permeable pavement, infiltration planters, cisterns, and rain gardens. An alternative approach to managing stormwater runoff Decreasing energy consumption Waste to energy program Enhancing aesthetics and public access/use 11

12 Southeast Atlanta Green Infrastructure Initiative Background Homes built in historic stream channels; low lying areas where stormwater naturally drain Stream channels were piped; floodplains still exist due to pipe overflows from capacity limitations Combined sewer area out of conveyance capacity Limited capacity often exceeded by high rainfall events Stormwater runoff exacerbated by higher amounts of impervious cover running across hard surfaces at greater velocities Over time, systems cannot accommodate developments Partial improvements made, leaving other problems Typical solutions can be disruptive, cost prohibitive 12

13 Assessment of Issues Computer Simulation of Existing Conditions 25 year 4 hour Critical Storm Drainage Area Total Area (acres) Impervious % Mechanicsville / Peoplestown % Summerhill % Grant Park % Englewood Manor % 13

14 Phased Approach & Community Input Action Plan Immediate Response Completed w/in 30 days Short Term Projects Completed w/in 6 months Intermediate Projects NTP: One completed, one in bid evaluation Long Term Projects In Design Follow up Meetings with Community Communicate phased approach Inform them of alternatives & schedule 14

15 Short-Term Projects March 2013 completed Bioswale Hill St Rain Garden Whitehall Terrace Rain Garden Dunbar Elementary School 15

16 Intermediate Projects Media Lot Vault Completed Feb 28, 2014 Permeable Pavers Additional vaults in design Wet detention ponds in design Media Lot Vault 16

17 Intermediate Projects Permeable Pavers ~6 miles of permeable pavers: Mechanicsville Peoplestown Summerhill Before After 17

18 Other Atlanta Green Infrastructure Projects Green Roof City Hall Rainwater Harvesting Southface Rain Garden Adair Park Pervious Paving English Park Stormwater Bump-out Whitehall Terrace Stormwater Planters Juniper Street (Proposed) Pervious Concrete Felder Street Bioswale Fernbank Museum 18

19 Historic Fourth Ward Park Opened 2011 Combined Sewer Capacity relief 17-acre park, 2-acre pond 19

20 Why use GI in Atlanta? Community Addresses drainage issues in historic neighborhoods that are being redeveloped Maximizes infrastructure investments by further reducing combined sewer overflows and flooding Environmental Protection Improves water quality in our surface waters Supports Mayor Reed s sustainability initiatives Compliance Complies with NPDES permit Removing Barriers Prepares the City for potential changes in federal stormwater rules 20

21 Post-Development Stormwater Management Ordinance Revised ordinance promotes green infrastructure Offers alternatives to developers Requires retention of runoff from 1-inch storm Adopted by Atlanta City Council February

22 Revised Ordinance-Accomplishments Coordinating with the development community for a balanced approach Partnerships Adopting the ordinance with no direct financial incentives Concept Plan & Consultation Meeting Refocuses design criteria from peak flow reduction of the rare storms to volume reduction of the more frequent storms Outreach & Training 22

23 Post-Development Training & Outreach Technical workshops for design professionals Partnerships with Southface and Atlanta Homebuilders Over 1,500 served 23

24 SFR Guidance Document 24

25 Tear-off Detail Sheets 25

26 Urban Waters Federal Partnership Through our partnership, we will revitalize urban waters and the communities that surround them, transforming overlooked assets into treasured centerpieces and drivers of urban revival. 26

27 Proctor Creek Watershed DWM Activities 319 Grant for Boone Blvd Greene Street Stream walks WQ data collection Spill response program FOG education Future BMPs Future Green Infrastructure projects Pilot multifamily grease recycling program 27

28 City of Atlanta Department of Watershed Management Jo Ann J. Macrina, P.E Margaret E. Tanner, P.E Susan Rutherford, AICP

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