To comply with amendments to the Clean Water Act, many small urban communities, including University Park, must take additional steps to protect waterway from polluted runoff to reduce the discharge of pollutants to the "maximum extent practicable."
The City has produced a Storm Water Management Plan outlining the measures it will develop and implement over the next five years. These steps include: methods to find and eliminate illicit discharges, modifying municipal operations that could lead to the discharge of pollutants, the enforcement of construction and post-construction site erosion and runoff controls and increasing public awareness.
View the Storm Water Management Plan (SWMP)
View the current Annual Report.
The term “storm water” refers to rainwater. Rainwater flows down storm drains and empties into creeks, streams, rivers and lakes. Unlike wastewater, it is untreated and can carry pollutants, sediments, trash, and pet waste directly to these waterways.
As storm water runoff travels over driveways, lawns, and sidewalks, it picks up a wide variety of chemicals, waste, and trash that are not naturally found in waterways. Storm water runoff enters the storm drain system through inlets and discharges untreated into creeks, streams, rivers and lakes. Local concerns include Turtle Creek and the ponds in Williams Park, Curtis Park and Caruth Park.
Some chemicals and other substances in storm water can be toxic, even at small levels. They endanger plants and animals that depend on the water to survive. Other items containing no chemicals like leaves and grass clippings decompose in our waterways and cause the same problems for fish and aquatic life. Soil, sand and minerals used in landscaping can also cloud waterways. Again, that inhibits underwater plant growth and depletes oxygen levels.
Storm water pollution can be controlled if everyone plays a part in preventing these substances from entering the storm drain inlets in the streets where they live and work.
You can help prevent storm water pollution by:
- Picking up after your pets
- Asking your landscaper to avoid blowing leaves and grass clippings onto sidewalks and streets
- Applying fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides when rain is not expected
- Picking up litter
- Disposing of hazardous chemicals properly and by notifying University Park’s Public Works Department of construction sites that aren't properly controlling storm water runoff
Lean how you can make a big difference on our local waterways.
These websites provide a wealth of additional information on this subject: