Project At A Glance:
Working with the Friends of the Winooski River, Watershed conducted a hydrologic analysis and designed a solution to mitigate damaging stormwater runoff in a small hardware store parking lot that was causing substantial erosion of the stream bank.

Client: Friends of the Winooski River

Location: Northfield, VT

The town of Northfield sits right on the banks of the Dog River that feeds into the upper Winooski River. Many residences and businesses are built right along the banks of the river in the downtown area, including Kenyon’s hardware store. Though small, Kenyon’s serves as a busy hub for local farmers and contractors who stop by in their trucks to pick up supplies. The compacted gravel back lot at Kenyon’s was in need of a comprehensive stormwater upgrade as the grading frequently resulted in minor flooding of the lot, threatening the building’s foundation and frequently overflowing over the steep riparian bank, eroding the bank and transporting significant sediment loads directly into the river.

Friends of the Winooski contracted Watershed to develop a design solution that would not only protect the building but also reduce pollution to river. Watershed conducted a hydrologic analysis of the lot and used that as the basis for a stormwater runoff infiltration retrofit design. The design called for re-grading the lot to redirect runoff to a series of stormwater infiltration swales with specially designed ‘windows’ into the ground. These windows, using high-infiltration rate substrates, virtually eliminated runoff from the lot to the river and turned erosive stormwater runoff into beneficial groundwater.

The store’s owners are happy with their now-dry back lot and the Friends of the Winooski River eliminated a perpetual source of pollution from the Dog River.