Water Quality Analysis & Design

When we discuss “green projects”, we think of greenhouse gases, air pollution, recycling and the like.  But one of the most offensive things development of any size can do is enable stormwater pollution to occur not just during grading and construction, but over the life of the project.  Today, civil engineers know how to design much cleaner and less polluting projects.  That’s what we do.

We use a process that begins with understanding the circumstances of the project’s watershed (the drainage basin where the project exists).  Some watersheds contain special needs or critical problems that must be considered when evaluating the design of a new project.

Once understood, the project can be designed and constructed to work with nature – not against it.  The major design features we look to control are these:  1) prevent pollution during construction, 2) reduce pollution over the life of the project, and 3) improve the watershed over the life of each project.

Prevent pollution during construction (Erosion Control)

This is also called erosion control and it has three major components, 1) preventing waste from leaving the construction site, 2) preventing erosion during construction,  and 3) eliminating siltation downstream of the project site.  That’s what we do.

Project Pollution During its Lifetime (Biofiltration)

After a project is constructed, we can reduce or eliminate pollution from it.  We do this by designing naturalized treatment areas that can take-out pollutants from stormwater before it leaves the project.  We can force all stormwater to flow to biofiltration basins (also called Rain Gardens) where biology works with filtration to remove oil, grease, nutrients and many other pollutants from the drainage before leaving.  That’s what we do.

Reduce Watershed Degradation (by Restorative Hydromodification)

As we build towns and cities we change hydrology.  We alter the amount of stormwater that sinks into the ground, evaporates into the air and generally increases the rainfall-runoff.  When you multiply this change by the hundreds or thousands of projects that have been constructed in a watershed – you can see riverbanks erode and flooding increase.  That is because the cumulative impact of development generally means more runoff with storms peaking sooner at higher levels.  The solution is something called “Restorative Hydromodification” which means that we reduce the stormwater flow leaving a project site to the same amount as did before anything was ever constructed on the location.  That’s what we do.

 

City of San Diego Publishes New Template for PDP SWQMPs

Late in February 2018, the City of San Diego posted a new template which must be used when preparing Storm Water Quality Management Plans for Priority Developments in the City of San Diego.  The template contains much of the same information as before but...

Earth Wind Water Engineering Staff to Sit on Stormwater Task Force

In January 2018, the Building Industry Association of San Diego (BIA) requested that Dan S. Biggs (principal engineer at Earth Wind Water Civil Engineering) continue to serve on the Industry advisory task force for stormwater regulations.  The BIA is very active in...

ASFPM Issues Flooding Resilience Paper

Earth Wind Water Civil Engineering frequently performs floodplain civil engineering work.  Our founder, Dan Biggs is a Certified Floodplain Manager (a national certification) so we closely follow changes to regulations and policies of urban flooding. Recently the...

Earth Wind Water Completes Urban Infill Project

Even though we have completed almost 100 water quality projects in San Diego, it is still satisfying to reach approval on the design of another one.  Our most recent project, a 14 unit apartment "in-fill-project" located in eastern San Diego.  The project was designed...

Our COVID-19 Response

We are in the middle of an epidemic that is unprecedented.  Our hearts go out to all who are affected by the disease, the work stoppages, and the generally high level of stress it is causing around the country.  In response to the government's request for isolation,...

City of San Diego Development Services Department Releases new Forms for Stormwater Infiltration

As a part of the recently released PDP SWQMP template, the City has issued new forms that must now be used in the evaluation of a site for infiltration.  These forms are in the "I Group" and deal with various evaluations of the site's infiltration...

New Project Engagement in La Jolla, CA

Rancho Bernardo, CA EARTH WIND WATER Civil Engineering has been selected to provide site engineering and application processing for an amazing custom home in the La Jolla Shores area of La Jolla, CA.  La Jolla is a world renowned location for its many...

EPA Releases Storm Water Calculator Tool

Rancho Bernardo, CA Today it was announced that the Environmental Protection Agency is releasing a new software toolkit for use in evaluating weather changes due to climate change based upon projections of an intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.  It is not...

New Project Engagement in Alpine, CA

Rancho Bernardo, CA EARTH WIND WATER Civil Engineering is pleased to announce that we have been chosen to design a unique 11 lot planned development nestled in the Alpine area of San Diego County.  The project will feature single family lots served from an...

Site Development Visualization

We are often asked ... Why do you offer a service to do "visualizations" of engineering projects? It's a fair question.  And the answer is not based on high-technology or anything like that.  It is because all decision-makers who approve civil engineering projects (no...

26 Acre Truck Transport Facility

Earth Wind Water Civil Engineering has been selected to design the grading and improvements for a 26-acre trucking facility in Otay Mesa, CA.  The facility known as a Truck Transport Facility is used to transfer freight trailers from Mexican trucking companies to US...

Rapid Project Previews

For decades as we have worked with Architects, Developers and Engineers, they have asked for a "quick and dirty" idea of what their planned project would look like on this or that piece of property. After privately rolling our eyes, we would begin the process of...

36 Acre Truck Parking Facility is Designed

Earth Wind Water Civil Engineering has completed the design of a large light industrial park near San Diego's Brown Field, cargo airport.  Similar to many of our previous projects in this area (called Otay Mesa) the transportation facility will meet a need created by...

Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure

Rancho Bernardo, CA Earth Wind Water Civil Engineering has accepted an invitation to join the national effort by civil engineers to meet the challenges of designing more environmentally sustaining project.  The organization behind this effort is called the Institute...

Integration of “Zoom” for Virtual Meetings

It is unfortunate that it took an emergency like the Covid-19 pandemic to bring about this change, but because of it Earth Wind Water Civil Engineering is announcing that effective immediately, we have fully integrated the ZOOM remote meeting conferencing system...

New Project Engagement in Del Mar, CA

Rancho Bernardo, CA EARTH WIND WATER Civil Engineering is very pleased to have been chosen to work with well-known Architect Allan Teta and Landscape Architect Brian Grove on a complex project in Del Mar, CA.  The project is taking a "ranch style" home on a large lot...

New office in Colorado Springs

Earth Wind Water Civil Engineering (EWW)  announced the opening of an office in Colorado Springs today.  The office will be in a new office building north of the downtown area.  The plans are to offer a menu of services to support local civil engineers and architect...

Our SLIP Design Process

We are often asked by design-teams "what's different about designing for low environmental impact projects"?  The answer is that we "SLIP" a couple of things into the normal process. SLIP refers to a "Sensitive Low Impact Project".  Low-Impact development is simply...

San Diego County Gets Final Model BMP Design Manual

Rancho Bernardo, CA Ever since the Region 9 Water Bard passed the new Storm Water Rule of 2013, it has been a "wait and see" situation for many site design professionals.  With the release of the June 2015 "Final Draft" ... we now can see how all of the Cities in San...