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Evaluation of an Anaerobically Enhanced Bioretention Cell’s Treatment of First Flush from Highway Runoff

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  2007 ASAE Annual Meeting  072030.(doi:10.13031/2013.22930)
Authors:   Charles V Privette, III, Bradley L Weeber
Keywords:   Bioretention, water quality, best management practices, stormwater, first flush, highway runoff

The goal of this research was to investigate the phenomenon of first flush and to measure the effectiveness of an anaerobically enhanced bioretention cell (BRC) as a best management practice for treating highway runoff. If a strong first flush is present for a watershed, a bioretention cell or other BMP would not need to treat the entire runoff volume to make significant improvements on water quality. The enhanced bioretention cell for this study was design to capture the first half inch of runoff from the impervious surface of a highway intersection. The enhanced cell designed included an anaerobic bottom layer not traditionally found in bioretention systems. Highway runoff and BRC discharge data were monitored and sampled for both water quantity and quality parameters.

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