From Industrial to Oasis

stormwater1 Storm water management for businesses is getting an interesting new take in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) With nine million people  and nine watersheds the once excellent storm water system is stressed. Different approaches to managing storm water are being looked at.

Partners in Project Green, a group within the Toronto Region Conservation Authority is working with private companies  to adopt lot level storm water management techniques, and get low impact technologies to the industrial, commercial, and institutional sectors.

The storm sewer infrastructure in the GTA is under stress from many factors from numbers of people to climate change. Not surprisingly there appears to be some quality concerns like total phosphorous, E. coli, and more. There is a movement underfoot to address these issues at the lot level with green roofs, rainwater harvesting,  and low impact development technologies including permeable pavement , rain gardens and bioswales.storm2

PPG got involved with Calstone Inc. a furniture manufacturer, who with assistance from PPG got help scaling up to a 9,300 litre rainwater harvesting tank., three infiltration ponds,  and a recycled materials walkway.

After  the first phase of construction , 4 of the 6 downspouts from Calstone’s roof were disconnected and turned to feed the harvesting tank and in turn the ponds. The second phase included landscaping with drought resistant grasses , shrub, and trees.stormwater3

This is such a unique approach that much will be learned from. Evaluating the project will lead to information that can be used to guide future similar situations. Since the project came online 1.8 million litres of rainwater has been diverted from the sewers. In the final phase the remaining downspouts will be diverted into an expanded system, including  a permeable pavement parking lot. In the end this showcase will capture 100% of their roof rain water and have removed themselves from the municipal water supply through water reuse projects within their facility.

What a great new look at storm water management!

Using Trees and Soils in Stormwater Management: A Webinar.


Inspired by Water Canada May/ June 2015 From Industrial to Oasis by Eric Melton and Alyssa Cerbu. The pictures and video are not from the project but give a mere representation and information.


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