WSSI's water quality swale, also known as a bioswale, is a 275 linear foot, horseshoe-shaped swale with three rock check dams along its length. Runoff is able to pond behind the check dams, increasing time of concentration and allowing for increased pollutant removal. The check dams are sized to detain the approximately 700 cubic foot water quality volume of the contributing subcatchment.
The shape of the swale sets up a longer flowpath for water before it reaches the stream, which further increases time of concentration for the subcatchment. This reduces stress on the stream system by reducing the peak rate of runoff. Therefore, the energy exerted on the stream banks is lower and less erosion occurs. The shape of the swale was difficult to build due to equipment limitations and site constraints.
The swale is vegetated with a variety of native meadow flora, creating valuable habitat areas for turkeys, foxes, hawks, cardinals, blue jays, and other wildlife.
More Information on WSSI's Bioswale