Stormwater Management

Stormwater Management


What is Stormwater Runoff?
Stormwater Runoff is rainfall that flows over the ARC-Stormwater-v1-01_Fotorground surface. It is created when rain falls on roads, driveways, parking lots, rooftops and other paved surfaces that do not allow water to soak into the ground. 

Stormwater Runoff is a leading source of water pollution and excess surface runoff to streams.

Where does Stormwater Runoff go?

When Stormwater cannot sink into the ground, it has nowhere to go but to flow across the surface of the ground.

Most Stormwater Runoff flows either: directly into streams, rivers, ponds, lakes and wetlands or down the nearest Storm Drain and then into the nearest waterway without any treatment.


What’s the Difference between Storm Drains and Sanitary Sewers?

image005City Storm Drains are separate from Sanitary Sewers and do not drain into municipal wastewater treatment facilities but carry Stormwater Runoff from a catch basin (a.k.a., storm drain inlet, curb inlet) into streams, rivers, ponds, lakes and wetlands.

The Sanitary Sewer is a system of underground pipes that carries sewage from bathrooms, sinks, kitchens, and other plumbing components to the wastewater treatment plant where it is filtered, treated and discharged.

How can Stormwater Runoff be reduced or prevented? 
To counteract these impacts of stormwater runoff, the City of Willmar has adopted a stormwater pollution prevention program to manage stormwater for all new development. Stormwater management is the use of specific practices, constructed or natural, to reduce, temporarily detain, slow down and/or remove pollutants from stormwater runoff.

Stormwater Pollution PreventionWillmar_Stormwater_Prevention_Program-1
The City of Willmar is required to have stormwater pollution prevention programs which includes six areas that combine to reduce the discharge of pollutants from storm sewer systems as much as possible: 

  1. Public education and outreach
  2. Public participation and involvement
  3. Illicit discharge detection and elimination
  4. Construction site runoff control
  5. Post-construction runoff control
  6. Pollution prevention and good housekeeping 
From the MPCA 
"Much of the overall success will depend on citizen involvement," says Randy Hukriede, manager of the MPCA's southwest region. "There are many ways individuals can help, from cutting back on lawn fertilizers to creating rain gardens that slow down and filter stormwater." The city has been looking for sites to create stormwater retention ponds. One is being developed adjacent to the new Wal-Mart store in the Water View Business Park in southeast Willmar.

"The city has been encouraged to aggressively manage new development as well as begin a long-term retrofitting of existing urban areas to minimize the impact of stormwater runoff," says Bruce Wilson of the MPCA. "State and local agencies have been working on a plan to restore Grass Lake southeast of the Highway 23-71 bypass. In this regard, it will be important for Willmar to treat as much of its stormwater as possible prior to discharge to Grass Lake or Lake Wakanda."

Follow these links for Willmar's Stormwater Management:


ORDINANCE NO. 1334
AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF WILLMAR ADOPTING A NEW CHAPTER 17, SURFACE WATER MANAGEMENT, ARTICLE I, IN GENERAL, AND ARTICLE II, ILLICIT DISCHARGE AND ILLEGAL CONNECTION TO THE CITY'S STORMWATER DRAINAGE SYSTEM.

ORDINANCE NO.1406
AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF WILLMAR AMENDING CHAPTER 17, SURFACE WATER MANAGEMENT AND REPEALING ORDINANCE NO. 1227, STORMWATER MANAGMENT ORDINANCE.

MPCA GENERAL PERMIT
AUTHORIZATION TO DISCHARGE STORMWATER ASSOCIATED WITH SMALL MUNICIPAL SEPARATE STORM SEWER SYSTEMS.