A Wholistic Approach to Campus Master Planning – A Stormwater Story

About a decade ago, Timmons Group was contacted to help address localized flooding issues on the historic Virginia State University campus. Careful consideration by the University’s Capital Outlay and Facilities Management Department resulted in selection of a professional engineering services organization with a keen understanding of the state’s changing stormwater regulations and preference for sustainable development planning. This presentation will detail our approach for improving campuswide drainage infrastructure and stormwater regulatory compliance as related to campus master planning.


Some of the most impactful watershed projects to-date are the establishment of a campus nutrient credit bank to track VSMP compliance for development projects associated with the Campus Master Plan and the Fleets Branch Stream Restoration project for Chesapeake Bay TMDL compliance. The Campus Nutrient Credit Bank largely consists of contributions from a vault installed in 2014 that contains 90 StormFilter® cartridges providing just over 10 lb/yr total phosphorus removal. The Fleets Branch Stream Restoration project addresses contributions from approximately 400 acres of urban regulated lands. Phase 1 was completed in 2020, and the University is currently collaborating with the City of Petersburg, DEQ, and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to complete Phase 2. We will highlight design, construction, and maintenance lessons learned, as well as a path for the future.


In addition to highlighting these projects which represent implementation of stormwater drainage improvement projects within a broader context, this presentation will highlight the University’s integrated approach to environmental stewardship through the Tree Campus USA initiative and cultivation of collaborative efforts beyond university boundaries.