Balancing Runoff Capacity With Rising Tides

Aug. 27, 2015

Miami Beach, Fla., is a beautiful resort community on the Atlantic Ocean. Much of the infrastructure that transports storm water to the sea was built just a few inches above sea level. Over the years, these structures have settled and sea levels have risen, often causing the storm water system to fill with seawater. Other elements of the system include vertical wells, which funnel runoff into the groundwater table. Pressure caused by rising seas has exceeded the capabilities of this system. During extreme tides, if the system is filled with seawater and groundwater, it causes the seawater to flood streets and properties, damaging roads and green areas and requiring costly repairs.  

Approximately 100 WaStop check valves have been incorporated into the Miami Beach storm water system. The valves often are installed in clay pipe, which has highly variable sizes. WaStop’s stainless steel body and mounting brackets allow it to be installed quickly and easily inside any existing pipe. Its memory membrane allows it to function in horizontal and vertical orientations. The membrane has pulsating flow action, which increases flow velocity, keeping the pipe clean. The pulsating flow allows debris to pass through the valve, making clogs and costly maintenance virtually nonexistent.  

The valves also can help solve the city’s problem with the vertical wells by allowing rainwater to flow down unimpeded while preventing groundwater from flooding streets, giving peace of mind and dry feet to the residents of Miami Beach.

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