Discharge and water-quality data collection at East Branch Allen Creek from 1990 through 2000 provide a basis for estimating the effect of the Jefferson Road detention basin on loads and concentrations of chemical constituents downstream from the basin. Mean monthly flow for the 5 years prior to construction of the detention basin (8.71 ft3/s) was slightly lower than after (9.08 ft3/s). The slightly higher mean monthly flow after basin construction may have been influenced by the peak flow for the period of record that occurred in July 1998 or variations in flow diverted from the canal. No statistically significant difference in average monthly mean flow before and after basin installation was indicated.
Total phosphorus was the only constituent to show no months with significant differences in load after basin construction. Several constituents showed months with significantly smaller loads after basin construction than before, whereas some constituents showed certain months with smaller and some months with greater loads, after basin construction. Statistical analysis of the 'mean monthly load' for all months before and all months after construction of the detention basin showed only one constituent (ammonia + organic nitrogen) with a significantly lower load after construction and none with higher loads.
Median concentrations of ammonia + organic nitrogen showed a statistically significant decrease (from 0.78 mg/L to 0.60 mg/L) after basin installation, as did nitrite + nitrate (from 1.50 mg/L to 0.96 mg/L); in contrast, the median concentration of dissolved chloride increased from 95.5 mg/L before basin installation to 109 mg/L thereafter. A trend analysis of constituent concentrations before and after installation of the detention basin showed that total phosphorus had a downward trend after installation.
Analysis of the data collected at East Branch Allen Creek indicates that the Jefferson Road detention basin, in some cases, provides an improvement (reduction) in loads of some constituents. These results are uncertain, however, because hydrologic conditions before basin installation differed from those in the 5 years that followed, and because inflow from the Erie-Barge canal may alter the water quality in the 1-mi reach between the basin outflow and the gaging station.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Effects of Jefferson Road stormwater-detention basin on loads and concentrations of selected chemical constituents in East Branch of Allen Creek at Pittsford, Monroe County, New York