Next Generation Stormwater Master Planning to Address Evolving Needs

Matthew Jones, PhD, PE, Associate Vice President, Hazen and Sawyer

Ryan O'Banion, Senior Associate, Hazen and Sawyer

Recent history has demonstrated how quickly and unexpectedly conditions and priorities can change, which can quickly diminish the value of a conventional stormwater master plan. New and increasingly accessible approaches including 2D modeling, dynamic dashboards, and interactive visualizations provide increased utility and longevity of master planning efforts, better addressing stormwater challenges and communicating those solutions to key stakeholders. In one example, a dashboard allows a user to dynamically adjust the weight of priorities like feasibility, cost, and co-benefits to rank proposed stormwater solutions based on how well they address those objectives. Not only does this approach provide long-term utility as objectives may change based on a variety of factors, including feedback from implementation efforts, but also allows stormwater planners to better understand and communicate alignment with different stakeholder priorities. In another example, interactive 360° renderings of projected flooding from 2D model results allows the general public to understand complex modeling results in a meaningful way. Understanding tools that are available, how they might be applied, and key considerations in their development and implementation can equip stormwater managers to effectively build the future of stormwater management efforts.

Author Bio

Dr. Matthew Jones leads Hazen and Sawyer’s stormwater practice group and offers national expertise in all aspects of stormwater management. Matthew has provided stormwater services for a wide array of communities, from large ultra-urban green infrastructure initiatives to small communities building an initial stormwater program.

Ryan is an experienced project manager who uses GIS, statistics, and field assessments to help clients make informed decisions about water resources. He has extensive experience in data management and geospatial analyses.