Taunton River Watershed Management Plan
Phase II – Example Code Reform and Demonstration Projects
February 15, 2011
The Final Report of Phase II of the Taunton River Watershed Management Plan is now available! This report is available for download below.
The Taunton River Watershed Management Plan is designed to assist the communities, organizations, and individuals throughout the watershed to evaluate the current conditions in the watershed, understand options and tools for managing the human impacts on the unique and vital water resources in the watershed, and implement appropriate tools at the local level.
For the purposes of this project, Horsley Witten and the Steering Committee conceived of the watershed planning and management process in three phases, the first two as part of the Taunton River Watershed Management Plan Project and the third as a broader and longer-term effort. These phases are as follows:
This report represents the progress and results from Phase II of this planning effort. Over the past two years, Horsley Witten worked with communities and organizations throughout the watershed to identify and develop six engineering demonstration projects in six communities to demonstrate innovative techniques to address stormwater management, habitat improvement, and wastewater management. We also worked with two communities - Norton and Lakeville - to develop innovative revisions to the local regulatory code to strengthen protections of the water resources in the watershed, in terms of water quality, water quantity, and habitat.
Throughout this process, Horsley Witten also presented at numerous public meetings to provide an overview of the project, discuss available innovative land use planning, and engineering tools to address the challenges in the watershed, gather feedback, and answer questions from interested participants. As part of each of the demonstration and code reform projects, we also discussed details of the site-specific projects with the local project contacts and presented the information to local audiences to educate the local community and/or assist with the public hearing or permitting processes.
Section 2 of this report presents the case for the importance of taking an integrated watershed-based approach to water resources management. The local regulatory code reform projects are presented in Section 3. Horsley Witten worked with the Town of Norton to help the Conservation Commission develop a Wetlands Protection Bylaw and accompanying regulations for consideration at the Town Meeting. We also worked with the Town of Lakeville to develop recommended revisions to the Zoning Bylaw and Subdivision Rules and Regulations to improve the water resources protections affected by various typical development patterns in Lakeville.
Details regarding several engineering demonstration projects are presented in Section 4. These projects include the design of low impact development (LID) stormwater management retrofits for existing and partially developed properties, and the design of an innovative onsite wastewater treatment and disposal system.
The next steps in the Taunton Watershed management effort, including Phase III and beyond, will require widespread watershed community participation. Recommendations for these steps are presented in Section 5. These recommendations have been developed from data collected and analyzed in Phase I, experiences with the engineering design demonstration projects and code reform projects in Phase II, as well as policy deliberations and concurrent studies by state and local agencies that have been undertaken during the implementation of Phase II and the development of this report.
Download the Final Report by clicking the links below.
A hard copy has also been provided to the Bridgewater State University Watershed Access Lab library (http://www.bridgew.edu/wal/index.htm).