Journal Article
Green and smart: perspectives of city and water agency officials in Pennsylvania toward adopting new infrastructure technologies for stormwater management

Stormwater runoff associated with urbanization is one of the main factors hindering continued progress toward cleaner water. The state of Pennsylvania has older cities and towns, ample water resources, and water quality problems that are all connected by aging, existing infrastructure for stormwater management. As older cities and towns begin to invest in new infrastructure, they have two, relatively new technology options: first, green infrastructure, and second, “smart” infrastructure, which adds sensors, controls, and communications. This paper examines how officials from cities and water agencies perceive these two solutions for their current stormwater management problems. Semistructured interviews were conducted with officials from the five cities and towns throughout Pennsylvania that have enacted stormwater fees to fund further infrastructure investment. Responses indicate that the officials perceive green infrastructure as performing inconsistently across its lifecycle and requiring labor-intensive maintenance. These officials hold positive views about smart infrastructure but want more information on performance and costs to reduce runoff. This study suggests research and tools that would help these officials address their stormwater management problems.

Title
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsMeng T, Hsu D, Wadzuk B
JournalJournal of Sustainable Water in the Built Environment
Volume3
Issue2
Date Published02/2017
Abstract

Stormwater runoff associated with urbanization is one of the main factors hindering continued progress toward cleaner water. The state of Pennsylvania has older cities and towns, ample water resources, and water quality problems that are all connected by aging, existing infrastructure for stormwater management. As older cities and towns begin to invest in new infrastructure, they have two, relatively new technology options: first, green infrastructure, and second, “smart” infrastructure, which adds sensors, controls, and communications. This paper examines how officials from cities and water agencies perceive these two solutions for their current stormwater management problems. Semistructured interviews were conducted with officials from the five cities and towns throughout Pennsylvania that have enacted stormwater fees to fund further infrastructure investment. Responses indicate that the officials perceive green infrastructure as performing inconsistently across its lifecycle and requiring labor-intensive maintenance. These officials hold positive views about smart infrastructure but want more information on performance and costs to reduce runoff. This study suggests research and tools that would help these officials address their stormwater management problems.

URLhttp://ascelibrary.org/doi/abs/10.1061/JSWBAY.0000824