Public Works Department

Middletown Stormwater Program

Stormwater is often referred to as the third, largely neglected, leg of the municipal water management stool, along with water and sewer. Most towns have long had water and sewer user fees or utilities that ensure that these programs are well managed, but it is only in the last 15 years that stormwater management has become an important issue for municipalities. Stormwater programs vary in terms of size and scope, but generally include activities such as street sweeping, catch basin cleaning, storm drain infrastructure maintenance, flood/storm damage repair and capital improvement projects. The stormwater program in Middletown currently encompasses the following areas of stormwater management:


“Public education & involvement”:

  • Stormwater informational materials are made available at town hall/public library/town website
  • Stormwater issues are discussed at meetings open to the public (i.e. town council)
  • Volunteer events/opportunities and demonstration projects throughout town


“GIS mapping of stormwater structures”:

  • Outfall mapping was completed in 2009
  • System mapping was completed in 2012
  • Key watershed areas have been mapped (Esplanade 1&2, Newport Ave. and Green End/Valley Road)


“Illicit discharge detection & elimination”:

  • Complaint tracking and work order management using Oscend and VUEWorks software
    • All manholes and catch basins have been inspected
    • 14 illicit discharges identified and eliminated to date


“Street sweeping & catch basin cleaning”:

  • All 90 miles of road swept annually
    • North Easton’s Pond watershed swept 3x/year
  • All 1,200 catch basins inspected annually
  • 650 priority catch basins were cleaned in 2012
    • Special attention paid to catch basins in North Easton’s Pond watershed


“Permitting & inspections”:

  • Construction site inspections
  • Post-construction site and Best Management Practice (BMP) inspections
  • Complaint tracking and response: “Repair/replacement of aging infrastructure”:
  • Example: Valley Neighborhood
    • Upgraded sewer, storm drains and road surface in three 50-year old subdivisions
    • Storm drain system was old and failing
    • Failed system caused flooding problems: “Engineering & master planning”:
  • Example: Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management 319 grant
    • Stormwater attenuation and source reduction BMPs for phosphorus in Bailey Brook watershed
  • Example: RIDOT & Town Gravel Wet Vegetated Treatment System (WVTS)
    • North Easton Pond Phosphorus Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL)
  • Hazard Mitigation Plan, TMDL Studies, Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plans (SWPPPs)


“Capital improvement projects”:

  • Stormwater Treatment Feasibility Study
    • Esplanade outfall relocation
    • Catch basin retrofits
    • Gaudet Middle School bioretention/Newport Avenue bioretention