Assessing the Operation and Maintenance requirements of BMPs in an Urban Neighborhood Retrofit
The Elmer Avenue Neighborhood Retrofit Project has been capturing and infiltrating stormwater for groundwater recharge in Sun Valley, Los Angeles since 2010. The Elmer Avenue retrofit employs a variety of structural and non-structural BMPS including, infiltration galleries, bioretention swales, permeable pavements, rain barrels, native vegetation and irrigation controls. Understanding the operation and maintenance (O&M) requirements of these BMPs is important as these systems are increasingly distributed throughout the region. In particular, concerns regarding the high costs and expertise required to maintain infiltration devices and vegetated systems, such as bioswales, have not been sufficiently addressed in current literature.
Since July 2010, Council for Watershed Health has conducted monthly field observations and accompanying photo documentation on the condition of public right of way improvements, as well as private property improvements. Public right-of-way assessments include documenting the condition of bioswales, including physical condition, plant survival, and trash accumulation, as well as the condition of the irrigation drips and the inlets and outlets to the street. Private property assessments include the condition of the plants, mulch and weed cover, as well as the condition of irrigation drips, rain barrels, and permeable pavement. We have also tracked the maintenance conducted by LA City field crews, such as catch basin cleanouts.
The results of 4 years of operation and maintenance monitoring will be presented as well as lessons learned.