Hydrologic characteristics of low-impact stormwater control measures at two sites in northeastern Ohio, 2008-13

Scientific Investigations Report 2015-5030
Prepared in cooperation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development
By: , and 



This report updates and examines hydrologic data gathered to characterize the performance of two stormwater-control measure (SCM) sites in the Chagrin River watershed, Ohio. At the Sterncrest Drive site, roadside bioswales and rain gardens were used to alleviate drainage problems in this residential neighborhood area. At the Washington Street site, a treatment train (including a pervious-paver system, rain garden, and bioswales) was used to reduce and delay stormwater runoff at a small business development. Selected metrics were used to demonstrate SCM system performance with regard to stormwater-management objectives at each site. Rain-garden overflow-frequency data collected at the Sterncrest Drive site during 2008–13 were used to characterize system sensitivity to rainfall characteristics. Approximately 70 percent of storms exceeding 0.75 inches during 3 hours or more resulted in overflows. Drainage-design features that may restrict flow through the system were identified. Overall, the data and local observations confirmed the continued success of the SCM at the Sterncrest Drive site in preventing roadway closure due to flooding. The additional years of data collected at the Washington Street site indicated that a previous analysis of increased runoff removal, based on only the first 2 years (2009–10) of data, provided premature conclusions. With 5 years of data (2009–13) and adjusting for changes in rainfall characteristics, it appears that the percentage of runoff removed by the system is decreasing; however, the lag time (time from onset of rainfall to runoff) has remained nearly constant. The annual mean percent removal for 2010–13 ranged from 55 to 37 percent with an overall mean of 45 percent, and this does meet the project objective of reducing runoff from the business complex. One possible explanation for the combination of increased volume of runoff and no change in the timing of runoff is the preferential flow paths developed in the SCM, increasing the capacity for internal drainage. Data indicated that the SCM system at the Washington Street site had reduced functionality over time.

Study Area

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Hydrologic characteristics of low-impact stormwater control measures at two sites in northeastern Ohio, 2008-13
Series title Scientific Investigations Report
Series number 2015-5030
DOI 10.3133/sir20155030
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Ohio Water Science Center
Description v, 27 p.
Time Range Start 2008-01-01
Time Range End 2013-12-31
Country United States
State Ohio
Datum North American Datum of 1983
Projection Universal Transverse Mercator projection
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details