Managing Stormwater for Urban Sustainability Using Trees and Structural Soils

Urbanization disrupts natural soil profiles, increases impervious surfaces and decreases vegetative cover. These disruptions increase stormwater runoff at the expense of groundwater recharge, degrading water quality and impairing aquatic habitats. The repercussions of this non point source pollution are being felt worldwide. Creative Best Management Practices (BMPs) that harness the ability of vegetation and soils to mitigate urban runoff are needed. This material is a culmination of four years of research at Virginia Tech, Cornell University and the University of California at Davis investigating how a novel stormwater BMP that relies on shade trees and structural soils can be designed and how it will function. We do not have the answer to every question but the approach presented here works and is in place now at our demonstration sites around the country. We developed this guide to assist others in implementing this BMP. We hope it will expand your toolbox and create new approaches for harnessing the power of trees in urban settings.
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Minnesota Water Research Digital Library
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