Flowing Forward: Assessing Stormwater Outfall Conditions for Resilient Urban Runoff Managment


  • Luna Accursi, Environmental Science, University of Delaware

Faculty Mentor(s)

  • Pinki Mondal, Department of Geography and Spatial Sciences, University of Delaware


Stormwater outfalls play a crucial role in managing urban runoff and protecting water quality in nearby water bodies. However, their conditions can vary significantly, impacting their functionality and potential environmental risks. This research project aimed to assess the conditions of stormwater outfalls within the study area along Brandywine Creek, and identify key factors contributing to their conditions, as well as provide an appropriate recommendation for future upkeep.

Comprehensive special analysis and mapping through Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology was utilized, as well as field inspection efforts, in order to locate and conduct observations on outfall conditions. These conditions were included but were not limited to reported structural integrity, presence of vegetation, proximity to urban development, flow rate/ properties, etc.

This project highlights the importance of utilizing best management practices, and strategies for managing stormwater assets to ensure long-term functionality and reduce potential environmental risks.

Furthermore, this project will indicate the economic and environmental benefits of investing in regular monitoring, and subsequent rehabilitation and maintenance of buried stormwater infrastructure. Environmental benefits, such as improved water quality, reduced pollutant loads, and enhanced ecosystem health have cascading benefits across multiple systems.

The findings of this research project will contribute valuable insight that will aid in the task of Wilmington DE stormwater management, providing evidence-based recommendations for optimizing outfall conditions and sustainability. By understanding the key factors influencing outfall conditions and adopting effective management strategies, communities can enhance their stormwater infrastructure’s resilience and mitigate potential and imminent environmental impacts.

This study’s implications extend beyond the study area, as the outlined approaches and recommendations can be applied to other urban regions with similar stormwater management goals. The research project underscores the significance of proactive asset management, educating communities and stakeholders in sustainable practices, and making informed decisions to ensure the long-term viability of stormwater infrastructure and protect valuable water resources.