Loading

University of Michigan Storm Water Management Highlights

U-M strives to protect water quality of the Huron River—an important drinking water and recreational resource—by reducing the volume, rate, and pollutant load of runoff. Storm water management also controls flooding, protects university and community infrastructure, and helps reduce demand on the City of Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County storm water systems.

Some storm water control measures are highly visible, like rain gardens and retention ponds. But you might walk over or past others without knowing they exist! Scroll to learn about a few of U-M's major storm water management projects.

What's below your feet when you walk through Ingalls Mall?

Not what you pictured?

This sophisticated underground storm water infiltration basin collects and treats water from 3 acres, allowing it to soak into the ground gradually. U-M installed this system electively (not as part of a permit requirement) in 2016.

Benefits:

  • Improves water quality by removing pollutants
  • Frees up capacity in the City of Ann Arbor’s storm water system
  • Reduces flooding risk
  • Replenishes groundwater

Similarly, under Monroe Mall...

U-M installed an infiltration basin under Monroe Mall during the construction of the Ross School of Business Jeff T. Blau Hall to help alleviate flooding on E University Ave. The basin collects and treats water from about 37 acres (21 U-M acres), allowing it to soak into the ground gradually. As with the Ingalls Mall project, U-M elected to install this infiltration system to meet storm water management needs, not as a permit requirement.

As shown in this map, the Ross School of Business Complex also features:

An underground infiltration system to reduce runoff and improve water quality

Another infiltration system under this interior courtyard

And porous concrete under the bike racks to reduce runoff.

Porous concrete

Munger Graduate Residences

This site features many storm water control measures that go beyond permit requirements. Some are visible, like these permeable pavers that allow water to soak into the ground.

Or this rain garden that captures water to reduce runoff.

Other storm water control measures at Munger are not visible to passersby.

What lies beneath the surface of this rain garden?

An infiltration system that:

  • Improves water quality by removing pollutants
  • Frees up capacity in the City of Ann Arbor's storm water system
  • Reduces flooding
  • Replenishes groundwater

Summer 2018 brings two more major storm water initiatives:

Trotter Multicultural Center

Rendering of Trotter Multicultural Center

U-M will be installing an elective underground infiltration system at Trotter Multicultural Center on South State Street to:

  • Reduce the likelihood of flooding at the new Trotter Multicultural Center
  • Free up capacity in the university’s and City of Ann Arbor’s storm water systems
  • Reduce flows to Allen Creek and then to the Huron River
  • Replenish groundwater

The system is designed to infiltrate a 100-year storm event from the property!

Central Campus underground infiltration system

U-M elected to install this system to:

  • Reduce the likelihood of flooding at Tisch Hall and other university infrastructure
  • Free up capacity in the university’s and City of Ann Arbor’s storm water systems
  • Reduce flows to Allen Creek and then to the Huron River
  • Replenish groundwater

The system can accommodate about 750,000 gallons of water at a time, which equates to 1.75 feet of water covering a football field!

Learn More

View other U-M storm water management projects on our interactive Sustainability Map.

Interested in the technical details? Environment, Health & Safety has you covered.

Prepared by Facilities & Operations departments The Office of Campus Sustainability (OCS); Environment, Health & Safety (EHS); and Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC).

Questions or comments? Contact The Office of Campus Sustainability at ocs_contact@umich.edu.

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.