As members of Villanova University look forward to the completion of the senior housing development on Lancaster Avenue, faculty and students of the Villanova Center for Resilient Water Systems (VCRWS) eagerly await the introduction of new stormwater infrastructure designed to be utilized in the development. The senior housing project will host a number of stormwater features, most notably the introduction of nine rain gardens, which are all set to handle the site’s stormwater runoff.
Construction began during the winter of 2017 and is scheduled to be completed during the summer of 2019. Both during and before this time, graduate students of VCRWS have been monitoring rainfall and water flow patterns on the site to see how much stormwater runoff is being contributed to nearby sewer systems. Now with multiple new green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) methods in place, students can continue monitoring the site after construction is completed to verify the effectiveness of the new systems. This will allow students and faculty to evaluate how much stormwater is being captured by vegetative systems on site, rather than contributing the excess water to local sewer systems.
The goal of this research is to determine how GSI techniques react to previously ultra-urban conditions. If a site that was formerly a surface parking lot with extremely compacted soils can be redeveloped into a community with functioning GSI, then that gives reason to believe these systems can be implemented into any future project, no matter the preexisting conditions!