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Case Studies - Wastewater Alternatives

View case studies conducted on the Wastewater Alternatives module.

Barnstable County, Massachusetts

Barnstable County Department of Health and Environment

The Barnstable County Department of Health and Environment (BCDHE) provides public health and environmental services for the 15 towns in Barnstable County, encompassing all of Cape Cod. The overall mission of the Department is to protect the public health as well as to promote the physical, mental and social well being of the residents of Barnstable County. This is why impacts to Cape Cod bays, estuaries, and freshwater surface and groundwater resources' resulting from nutrient-rich wastewater flows are a high priority item in Barnstable County. 

Innovative and Alternative (I/A) wastewater systems are of particular interest to BCDHE and towns within Cape Cod. The web-based Carmody™ system has allowed BCDHE to track and monitor I/A systems much more comprehensively and efficiently than had been done previously. As a result of the Carmody™ system, 14 of the 15 towns on Cape Cod have implemented regulations requiring all I/A installations to be input electronically into the web-based system. If a unit is not maintained according to its set maintenance schedule or if monitoring results fall out of compliance, the system will alert BCDHE. From there, BCDHE will either contact the town to issue a notice of noncompliance or issue the notice themselves.

The Carmody™ system has been recognized as a very useful tool by BCDHE, and the department is continually looking at new and different ways to use the resource. In addition to tracking I/A systems, the system is also being used to evaluate the functionality of different types of I/A technologies.

For more information, you can contact:

George Heufelder

Director of BCDHE

(508) 375-6605

 

Partridgeberry Place, Ipswich, Massachusetts

Partridgeberry Place, Ipswich

Partridgeberry Place, located in Ipswich, Massachusetts, is a small-scale low impact development (LID) that includes 20 residential units within 38 acres. 

Partridgeberry Place Site Layout
Partridgeberry Place Site Layout

A shared septic system that includes a gravity collection system, a large tank, and two large leaching fields was used to augment the clustered site design.

Details on the system:

  • The shared septic system facilitates smaller lot sizes while still allowing on-site recharge of wastewater.
  • The design flow for the entire property per Title V is 8,800 gallons per day (gpd), which is below the Massachusetts Groundwater Discharge Permit threshold of 10,000 gpd.
  • The system was constructed as a standard shared system utilizing a 27,000 gallon septic tank, 13,000 gallon pump chamber, and two standard Title V leaching fields.

As required by MA DEP, the Partridgeberry Place homeowners association is responsible for maintaining the approximately $125,000 – $150, 000 system. The system is monitored by Clearwater Industries of Ipswich and checked quarterly.

Partridgeberry Place Shared Septic Facility
Partridgeberry Place Shared Septic Facility

The Partridgeberry Place OSRD includes many LID features in addition to the shared septic system. Other LID features of the site include:

  • Compact site design, with single-family houses on lots between 8,000-12,000 square feet
  • Minimization of land disturbance
  • Reduced impervious surfaces (50% reduction) resulting from decreased setbacks (shorter driveways) and a narrower road (18 feet versus 24 feet);
  • Grass pavers for overflow parking
  • Reduced lawn areas and use of native, drought-resistant vegetation for landscaping

An enhanced stormwater management system is included onsite as well and includes the following innovative stormwater management facilities:

  • An open grass swale that drains to a central bioretention area
  • Rain gardens on individual house lots
  • Infiltration of roof runoff through drywells.

USGS developed a design for monitoring site runoff from both the Partridgeberry Place LID subdivision and a nearby conventional subdivision and installed monitoring equipment during the winter and spring of 2007.

For more information, you can contact:

Claire Golden

MA DEP

Northeast Regional Office

(978) 694-3244

The Pinehills Developments, Plymouth, Massachusetts

The Pinehills Development, Plymouth

The project was planned as an open-space mixed-use development (OSMUD) as an alternative to the standard subdivisions which predominate the region. It serves as an excellent example of compact design, reduction of impervious surfaces, water conservation, wastewater re-use, and historic preservation. The development site is in a rural area with no pre-existing public wastewater services.

The sewage treatment plant enabled densities of up to eight residential units- per acre in development clusters surrounded by open space
The sewage treatment plant enabled densities of up to eight residential units- per acre in development clusters surrounded by op

Wastewater Plan:

To accommodate high-density development clusters the Pinehills comprehensive sewer system delivers wastewater to a state-of-the-art treatment facility which has been careful sited hydrologically downgradient of the drinking water supply site. Treated wastewater is discharged to the ground where it infiltrates to groundwater. A series of re-capture/irrigation wells were then sited downgradient of the wastewater treatment plant to recover this treated wastewater after it is mixed with groundwater.

Public drinking water supply well, Zone 2 protection area, wastewater treatment plant and irrigation/re-capture wells
Public drinking water supply well, Zone 2 protection area, wastewater treatment plant and irrigation/re-capture wells.



For more information, you can contact:

Jon Judge

President

Pinehills, LLC

(508) 209-9002

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