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Stormwater Management

Learn about stormwater management in Princeton
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Detective Sgt. Ben Gering
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Precipitation that reaches the ground is either lost by evapotranspiration; infiltrates into the ground below the root zone (becoming groundwater); or becomes stormwater runoff. Stormwater runoff flows from rooftops, over paved areas and bare soil, and through sloped grass and wooded areas while picking up a variety of sediments and pollutants on its way. Stormwater can flow into a municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) or directly to a lake, stream, river, wetland. 

Storm sewer systems include catch basins which capture runoff and transport it into pipes underground.  In some areas, these pipes may lead to a stormwater management basin, which may control the rate of flow and improve the quality of stormwater, depending on how they are designed. They can also recharge groundwater systems. Many storm sewer systems outfall untreated water directly into the water bodies we use for swimming, fishing, and providing drinking water.   In an effort to prevent harmful pollutants from being washed or transported into an MS4, federal and stormwater regulations require MS4 operators to obtain a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit and implement a stormwater program.  

Management of stormwater is not only critical to our environment, it is critical to our own health and well-being. Simply capturing stormwater from rainfalls and discharging it into our streams can be detrimental to us and our environment as it creates the following damage:

  •  Fails to recharge our groundwater aquifers
  •  Causes downstream flooding
  •  Erodes the streambanks and scours the streambed
  •  Dumps sediment and pollutants into our streams

Population growth and the development of urban/urbanized areas are major contributors to the amount of pollutants in the runoff as well as the volume and rate of runoff from impervious surfaces. Together, they can cause changes in hydrology and water quality that result in habitat modification and loss, increased flooding, decreased aquatic biological diversity, and increased sedimentation and erosion. The benefits of effective stormwater runoff management can include:

  • ‍Protection of wetlands and aquatic ecosystems
  • Improved quality of receiving waterbodies
  • Conservation of water resources
  • Protection of public health
  • Flood control     

Princeton is required to not only regulate the activities of developers, but to manage its own stormwater system in such a way as not to pollute our streams. We must also have an active public participation and education component in the program.  As you may have noticed storm sewer inlets have now been labeled to let everyone know that they drain directly to our waterways. 

Please help all of us reduce runoff and keep our waterways clean.  Remember if it is on your lawn, driveway, or in the street, it will eventually make its way into our streams. Here are some examples of what you can do at home:

  • ‍Reduce impervious surfaces by using pervious pavement, pavers or bricks rather than concrete or asphalt for a driveway or sidewalk.
  • Divert rain from paved surfaces onto grass to permit gradual infiltration.
  • Connect downspouts carrying the roof runoff into dry wells for recharging the groundwater.
  • Install rain barrels under the downspouts to capture rainwater for later use in your gardens.
  • Landscape with the environment in mind. Choose the appropriate non-invasive plants, shrubs and trees for the soil in your yard; don't select plants that need lots of watering (which increases surface runoff), fertilizers or pesticides.
  • Maintain your car properly so that motor oil, brake linings, exhaust and other fluids don't contribute to water pollution.
  • Never dump litter, motor oil, animal waste, or leaves into storm drains or catch basins.
  • Follow all waste disposal rules. 
  • Help keep your local catch basins clean and functioning by picking up debris along the street that will otherwise be washed into the basins with the next storm. Avoid raking leaves into the street where they could wash into and clog the catch basins.              

Remember to share these habits with your neighbors.  More information is available at  www.cleanwaternj.org.

Managing stormwater to reduce the impact of development on local watersheds and aquifers relies on minimizing the disruption in the natural flow - both quality and quantity of stormwater. By designing with nature, the impact of urbanization can be greatly reduced.  This can be accomplished by following these principles:

  • Minimizing impervious surfaces;
  • Maximizing natural areas of dense vegetation;
  • Structural stormwater controls such as stormwater management basins and
  • Practicing pollution prevention by avoiding contact between stormwater and pollutants.

Special thanks to the Township of Montgomery, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and the Environmental Protection Agency for development of this information!

 

Witherspoon-Jackson Historic District

Web: http://nj.gov/counties/mercer/departments/hcd/program.html

 

Mercer County Affordable Housing Veterans Residence provides rental units for low-income veterans. The rental property is located at 2280 Hamilton Ave., Hamilton, NJ 08619. For more information, visit:

For eligibility and requirements, download the PDF handbook at:

http://nj.gov/counties/mercer/departments/pdfs/housing_veterans_residence_manual.pdf

To view the application, download a PDF copy at: http://nj.gov/counties/mercer/departments/pdfs/housing_veterans_residence_application.pdf

For more information, contact the Mercer County Affordable Housing Program at:

640 South Broad Street, Trenton, NJ 08611

Phone: (609) 989-6858, Fax (609) 989-0306

Web: http://nj.gov/counties/mercer/departments/hcd/program.html

 

3.4.2      Municipality-Specific Housing Programs

In Alphabetical Order by Municipality

Ewing: The Township of Ewing coordinates its affordable housing program in collaboration with

Piazza & Associates. They provide both home sales and rental units for low and moderate-income households.

Princeton Forrestal Village

216 Rockingham Row, Princeton, NJ 08540

Phone: (609) 786-1100, Fax: (609) 786-1105

Email: Ewing@HousingQuest.com

Web: www.piazza-and-associates.com/afhousing.php?pa=jefferson

 

Hamilton: Hamilton Townshipcoordinates its affordable housing program in collaboration with Piazza & Associates. They provide both home sales and rental units for low and moderate-income households.

Princeton Forrestal Village

216 Rockingham Row, Princeton, NJ 08540

Phone: (609) 786-1100, Fax: (609) 786-1105

Email: Hamilton@HousingQuest.com

Web: www.piazza-and-associates.com/afhousing.php?pa=hamiltonwelcome

 

Hamilton: Hamilton Township Housing and Urban Development Office provides information regarding Community Development Block Grant Program (i.e. housing rehabilitation), rental assistance (Housing Choice Voucher Program), and affordable housing.

2090 Greenwood Avenue, P.O. Box 00150 Hamilton, NJ 08650

Phone: (609) 890-3675, Fax: (609) 890-3525

Email: JBlakely@hamiltonnj.com

Web: www.hamiltonnj.com/HUD

 

Hopewell Township: TheTownship of Hopewell affordable housing program provides both for sale homes and rental units. Hopewell’s Affordable Sales are managed by Princeton Community Housing Development Corporation.

One Monument Drive, Princeton, NJ 08540

Phone: (609) 924-3822, ext. 5

Email: necall@princetoncommunityhousing.org

Web: https://www.princetoncommunityhousing.org/communities/hopewell-township-affordable-sales-program

 

Hopewell Borough: Hopewell Borough provides affordable housing in accordance with COAH. Contact the affordable housing liaison for more information.

88 East Broad Street, Hopewell, NJ 08525

Phone: (609) 466-2636, Fax: (609) 466-8511

Email: Michele.hovan@hopewellboro-nj.us

Web: www.hopewellboro-nj.us/departments/administration/affordable-housing/          

 

Hightstown Housing Authority serves low income residents of the Borough of Hightstown and the surrounding areas.

131 Rogers Avenue, Hightstown, NJ 08520

Phone: (609) 448-2268, Fax: (609) 426-9440

Email: kleprevost@Hightstownhousing.org

Web: www.hightstownhousing.org/default.aspx

 

Lawrence Township: Lawrence Township provides affordable housing for both purchasers and renters.

2207 Lawrence Road, P.O. Box 6006, Lawrence Township, NJ 08648

Phone: (609) 844-7087, Fax: (609) 896-0412

Email: Alink@lawrencetwp.com

Web: www.lawrencetwp.com/affhousing.html

 

Pennington Borough has limited affordable housing properties, which are advertised through the New Jersey Housing Resource Center at www.nj.gov/njhrc/find.

For more information, contact the Affordable Housing Liaison:

30 North Main Street, Pennington, NJ 08534-0095

Phone: (609) 737-0276

Email: eheinzel@penningtonboro.org (Eileen Heinzel, current affordable housing liaison)

Web: www.nj.gov/njhrc/find or www.penningtonboro.org

           

Princeton Housing Authority (PHA) is a government corporation that provides housing for low income families in Princeton while promoting self-sufficiency. PHA owns and manages 236 apartments for families, seniors, and disabled residents in addition to five developments in Princeton. Units may have income requirements.

1 Redding Circle, Princeton, NJ 08540

Phone: (609) 924-3448

Web: www.princetonhousing.org/

 

Robbinsville Township: Robbinsville Township provides affordable housing for both sale and rent. For more information, contact the Municipal Housing Liaison/Administrative Agent, Gail Pfister.

2298 Route 33, Robbinsville, NJ 08691

Phone: (609) 259-3600 ext. 110

Email: gailp@robbinsville.net

Web: www.robbinsville-twp.org/departments/affordable_housing/index.php

 

Trenton Housing Authority (THA) provides affordable housing for Trenton residents. For a listing of affordable rental properties in the City of Trenton, visit www.trentonnj.org/ documents/rental_housing_list.doc (Word document). For Trenton Housing Authority eligibility requirements, visit www.tha-nj.org/apply-for-public-housing.

875 New Willow Street, Trenton, NJ 08638

Phone: (609) 278-5000

Web: www.tha-nj.org/apply-for-public-housing

 

West Windsor: TheTownship of West Windsor affordable housing programs are coordinated in collaboration with Piazza & Associates. Sales and rentals are available for low and moderate income households.

Princeton Forrestal Village

216 Rockingham Row, Princeton, NJ 08540

Phone: (609) 786-1100, Fax: (609) 786-1105

Email: Info@HousingQuest.com

Web: www.piazza-and-associates.com/afhousing.php?pa=wwtwp

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