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RAN: Redesigning the American Neighborhood Project

RAN Stata Center biofiltration

Best Management Practices (BMPs): MIT Stata Center Biofiltration System

The construction of the Stata Center at the Massachusettes Institute of Technology (MIT) allowed MIT and engineers to design and install a state of the art Stormwater Biofiltration System.

MIT's Stata Center
Image courtesy of MIT Dept of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

Prior to construction, stormwater from the site was directed into combined sewers leading to a treatment plant. During heavy rainfall events the combined sewer systems were prone to overloading the treatment plant, releasing untreated water directly into the Charles River. Following the completion of the new treatment system, stormwater is directed into a biofiltration swale containing vegetation and soils which naturally filter out oil, grease, and suspended solids.

outwash basin profile

After the stormwater is directed through the biofiltration swale, it is detained underground in a plastic lattice structure capable of holding 50,000 gallons. Some of the detained water is then harvested and reused in the Stata Center for flushing toilets. The remaining water in the detention structure is slowly released into the storm sewer system. The Biofiltration System is estimated to reduce peak flow by at least 50% and to reduce Total Suspended Solids (TSS) by 80%.

Additional images courtesy of: Stata Center Biofiltration System website.

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Last modified October 16 2009 10:15 AM

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