City of Melbourne Awarded State Grant to Fund Innovative Downtown Stormwater Treatment Project
he City of Melbourne has been awarded a $200,000 grant from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Green Stormwater Infrastructure Program to fund a new stormwater treatment project that will transform existing landscaped features in Downtown Melbourne to planted landscaped boxes that can capture and clean polluted stormwater. In addition to keeping polluted stormwater out of the Indian River Lagoon, the project will help alleviate standing water that remains in the curbs after heavy rains.
The new treatment boxes will be installed within existing landscaped islands on the corner of New Haven Avenue and Municipal Lane and on the corner of New Haven Avenue and Vernon Place. Stormwater will be diverted into the boxes from the curb and filtered through layers of vegetation and treatment media.
The project will include use of two types of media, including a new media not previously used in the state of Florida. After the project is constructed, a team from the University of Florida will study and monitor the effectiveness of the different types of treatment media used. Results may help determine which type of media is most effective in removing pollutants, such as excess hydrocarbons, that are a particular problem in urban commercial areas like Downtown Melbourne. Lessons learned could help inform future projects in similar areas statewide.
The $200,000 grant will be used to construct the boxes. The City will contribute $25,000 for design and surveying services. Construction is expected to begin in Spring 2022.