The Friends of the Mad River (FMR), headquartered in Waitsfield, Vermont, is a small non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of the Mad River, one of Vermont’s most picturesque rivers. The Mad River is threatened with excess stormwater runoff from numerous surrounding developments in the Valley, which why the FMR hired Watershed Consulting to develop a smartphone app to help them with stormwater management issues.
The app can easily and reliably collect geocoded data in the field on stormwater management issues and opportunities at residences. The data can then be analyzed and sorted to develop a prioritized list of solution sites for future implementation. Watershed Consulting took a list of criteria developed by the FMR and created a simple, easy-to-use app that trained volunteers can use on their smartphones. Watershed Consulting also provided training on different stormwater issues and management practices so that volunteers would be better equipped while collecting data. The app will allow FMR to:
- Easily create a region-wide map showing all assessed sites, or sites that still need to be assessed. This will help them prioritize future work.
- Collect high-quality data with a location, photos, and in-depth text description that can be used for planning, reporting, and outreach purposes.
- Potentially share the app structure and platform State-wide for other water quality advocacy groups to use in their work, providing a common structure for all groups. This common structure will facilitate State-wide prioritization.