Water Quality Project on Rhode Island Avenue

Corvias-Feb-2017In 2010 the EPA established defined limits on the amount of pollutants that can enter tidal rivers and the Chesapeake Bay.

In July 2012, House Bill 987 became effective mandating all jurisdictions and municipalities
in Maryland to participate in Stormwater Restoration Programs (SWRP). On September 25, 2012 the City agreed to participate with Prince George’s County’s SWRP.

To comply with the EPA mandate, Prince George’s County must implement stormwater treatment measures throughout the County that will reduce the amount of nitrogen, phosphorus and sediment by 25, 24 and 20 percent respectively from 15,000 acres of polluted stormwater runoff by 2025. Compliance with this mandate requires the implementation of storm water management best practices at an estimated 46,000 locations throughout the County. Some of these storm water management best practices will be implemented in the City.

In 2014 the County entered into a 30-year public-private partnership with the Corvias Group, of East Greenwich, Rhode Island referred to as the Clean Water Partnership. Under this agreement Corvias will first oversee the retrofitting of 2,000 acres of impervious area within the County over the next three years. (Just as a note the County, through its traditional means of procurement, is also retrofitting 2,000 acres concurrently with Corvias.) Corvias had originally hired CH2M Hill of Englewood, Colorado to perform planning, design, and construction inspection for the first 2,000 acres.

At the November 17, 2015 City Council Worksession, representatives from Corvias and CH2M Hill presented the overall scope of their partnership with the County and a general plan of possible locations in the City that might be suited for water quality projects. There were approximately 15 locations in the City that were being investigated. The minutes from that Worksession state:

They want to move forward on designing approximately 15 sites in the City for stormwater treatment projects. This is not for flood control and in fact they have to stay out of the 100 year floodplain. Projects will likely include sand filters, rain gardens, submerged gravel wetlands. They will return to Council with more details as they are defined. This program includes design, construction and maintenance of the stormwater management features.

The minutes from the November 24, 2015 Regular Meeting includes the following Consent Agenda motion:
15-G-131 Authorization for Corvias Solutions and Prince George’s County to proceed with planning stormwater management projects in the City at locations to be determined with further consultation with the City.

The Clean Water Partnership presented to the NCPCA on January 14, 2016. Prior to this meeting CH2M Hill
had left the project team. Peter Littleton and Tasha Brokenberry of Corvias presented the overall scope of the project and answered questions from the audience. This past summer Corvias hired Bowman Consultants of Annapolis, Maryland to pick up where CH2M Hill left off in evaluating the possible sites in the City suited for water quality projects.

The Clean Water Partnership presented to the North College Park Citizen’s Association (NCPCA) again on September 8, 2016. Of the 15 possible locations they had identified in November 2015, only 5 locations showed any promise for further evaluation. These locations were:

1. Narragansett and Muskogee (site 52) behind REI
2. The dead-end of Odessa (site 67) intersection of Odessa Road at 52nd Avenue
3. Hollywood Road at 52nd Ave (site 32) the triangle at the intersection of Narragansett Parkway and 52nd Avenue
4. Rhode Island Ave at Blackfoot (site 33) along Rhode Island Avenue in front of Attick Towers 5. Hollywood and Autoville (site 54) across from the Chinese Bible Church (north of the Mazza Grand Marc Apartments

While the Clean Water Partnership waited on comments from the NCPCA on the 5 projects presented at the September meeting, they continued their evaluation by performing preliminary engineering at these sites. By November 2016, only 2 locations seemed to provide any potential in fulfilling the requirements of the overall program. These locations were:

1. Narragansett and Muskogee (site 52) behind REI, and 2. Rhode Island Ave at Blackfoot (site 33) along Rhode Island Avenue in front of Attick Towers

The Narragansett and Muskogee (site 52) was subsequently removed from consideration because of its impact to the tree buffer between the houses along Muskogee Street and the back of the shopping center.

There is only one location in the City right–of-way which appears to have potential – Rhode Island Ave at Blackfoot (site 33) along Rhode Island Avenue in front of Attick Towers.

Corvias will be attending the tonight’s Worksession to discuss this project and address all other questions
related to the Clean Water program.

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