def # 218 11/30/11
NUTRIENT REMOVAL PART OF NEXT GENERATION OF STORM BASINS
TOMS RIVER - Following the design work and extensive review, Ocean County Freeholders are ready to take the next step
in renovating and upgrading eight existing stormwater detention basins in order to remove nutrients before they can enter
the Barnegat Bay.
"These renovations are really the next level of stormwater management being required by the DEP," said Freeholder
John P. Kelly, Director of Law and Public Safety. "In the 1970s, basins were designed for flood control. In the 1990s, we
began addressing water quality like removing trash and sediments from stormwater. Now this next step deals with nutrient
The Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders will seek contractors to renovate eight detention basins " seven of
which are located in Toms River and focus on the Toms River watershed and the other in Lacey Township addressing the
Forked River. The renovations are expected to improve removal of nutrients, in particular 8,000 pounds of nitrogen will
be removed annually.
The total cost of the new basins is expected to be about $7.5 million and will be paid for by a combination of
grants and low interest loans from the state Department of Environmental Protection and the state Environmental
"We are closely working with the state to continue efforts to improve the water quality of Barnegat Bay," said Freeholder
Director Joseph H. Vicari, who serves as liaison to the Barnegat Bay Partnership. "Ocean County continues to make a
substantial investment in keeping the bay clean, now working with the state and the Governorís 10 point plan we are
embarking on several projects to update detention basins."
The Freeholders recently approved fronting the money for the projects under two bonding ordinances introduced at
their Oct. 5 meeting.
Ocean County expects to receive $9.1 million from the state. Of that $4.9 million will be grant money and the
remainder will be in deferred low interest loans which also provides $1.6 million for the acquisition of a vacuum
cleaner/sewer jet truck and three new street sweepers.
"Ocean County will appropriate the funds in anticipation of payment from the state," said Freeholder John C.
Bartlett Jr. "This is all part of the process and will help advance the work allowing us to complete the renovations by
the end of 2012."
Freeholder James F. Lacey, who serves as liaison to the Ocean County Road Department, noted the renovations will
be made to basins already located on county property.
"These upgrades will include the installation of a series of perforated pipes, the planting of wetland plants,
and ultimately creating manmade wetlands which will help capture the nutrients keeping them from entering the bay," Lacey
said. "This is the first time this is being done and each location is unique."
The renovations will be made at detention basins in Toms River on Sunset Avenue, at Toms River High School East,
at Todd Road, and on Vermont Avenue, along with three sites on the Ocean County College campus off of Hooper Avenue. The
work in Lacey Township will take place at the Hoyt Street detention basin.
When determining which detention basins would be renovated and upgraded, the Ocean County Engineering Department
looked for basins that were not in close proximity to residential properties and were a little more remote and providing
the proper geotechnical conditions.
"We looked at areas that were not already wetlands nor did they have endangered or threatened species," said
Kelly, who serves as liaison to the Ocean County Engineering Department. "We looked at what had the most potential to
remove the most amount of nitrogen and was the most cost effective."
Ocean County Engineer Frank Scarantino said his department working with consultants had to translate a one-acre
pilot project conducted by the University of New Hampshire to a much larger scaled project that would provide the best
outcome for Ocean County.
"We took this model and translated it to a real life scale," Scarantino said. "Some of these projects include
hundreds of acres of watershed."
The County anticipates that contracts will be awarded in January 2012 and work on the renovations would begin
shortly thereafter. Work on all of the eight basins is expected to be substantially complete by the end of 2012.
"Ocean County has been in the forefront in taking steps to keep Barnegat Bay the treasure that it is," said
Freeholder Deputy Director Gerry P. Little. "And again we are the ones to take the first steps in implementing new
techniques that will begin to remove nutrients from stormwater keeping them out of the bay."