Building a Comprehensive GI Maintenance Program for Over a Thousand Assets from the Ground Up

Within a few years, there will be over a thousand District-owned stormwater green infrastructure (GI) assets within the Right-of-Way that all require maintenance. The District Department of Transportation’s bioretention, permeable pavement, and other stormwater best management practice (BMPs) are frequently subject to adverse urban conditions that lead to trash buildup, sedimentation, clogging, and other types of damage that impede stormwater performance and other benefits. To proactively plan for the routine maintenance and as needed repair of these facilities, RK&K and Straughan Environmental assisted DDOT in building a comprehensive GI Maintenance Implementation Plan for the inspection, maintenance, and tracking of these assets. The intent is for this plan to be used in 2022 and beyond to establish a functional maintenance program and obtain funding for the program’s continuation.

This presentation will provide helpful insights on the process of establishing a comprehensive GI Maintenance Plan, as well as some of the major recommendations, key components and considerations, training material, and cost projections which were included in the District’s Plan.

The process of developing the plan included interviewing three agencies who currently have GI maintenance programs: Philadelphia Water, NYC DEP, and DC Water; review of existing BMPs and their organization in a central database; review of existing DDOT GI standards; and then buildout of key portions of the plan. Key components of the plan which can be presented include training material covering common BMP types and their components; common and uncommon maintenance concerns; examples of clear and detailed standard operating procedures and workflows for maintenance, inspection, and program administration; cost and equipment projections; and a Cityworks asset management integration plan. The plan covers both routine preventative maintenance as well as more intensive repairs and rehabilitation of GI BMPs.

GI maintenance is essential to ensure long-term functionality, meet stormwater permit requirements, and solidify community relationships. The material in this presentation can be used as guidance by other jurisdictions to develop or refine their own GI maintenance programs. The goal of the presentation is also to spur conversations and focus within the audience on maintenance lessons learned and best practices.