Furthering the State of Knowledge on Stormwater Management

Toronto and Region Conservation’s Environmental Monitoring and Data Management (EMDM) section specializes in the collection and analyses of data related to surface water and groundwater quality and quantity, as well as river morphology and terrestrial and aquatic communities and their associated habitats.

With an interest in furthering the state-of-knowledge on stormwater management issues, the EMDM team has recently expanded its technical expertise to support regional municipalities in monitoring the performance of stormwater management infrastructure in new developments.

TRCA stormwater monitoring team at work
TRCA staff enter a maintenance hole in order to monitor automatic flow sensors that measure the volume of stormwater entering adjacent infiltration trenches.

Monitoring the effectiveness of stormwater management infrastructure is an important step towards improving the quantity and quality of the runoff that eventually reaches local rivers, streams, and other waterbodies.

Stormwater runoff is considered to be one of the most serious environmental impacts stemming from urban development in Toronto and surrounding regional municipalities. You can learn more about what is being done about regional stormwater management in The Living City© Report Card.

tipping bucket rain gauge
A tipping bucket rain gauge collects rainfall data to correlate with the flow received in a nearby stormwater pond and infiltration trenches.

The data we collect provides partner municipalities with the knowledge they need to assess the effectiveness of existing stormwater facilities and the maintenance required, as well as improve facilities’ design and function.

The data are also used by other TRCA departments and our partners to develop supporting tools, guidelines and policies, and to deliver education and training programs related to stormwater management.

plastic containers filled with stormwater samples
A collection of Total Suspended Solids (TSS) samples taken from automated samplers at the inlet and outlet of a stormwater pond following a rainfall event.

Having experience with monitoring both existing stormwater controls as well as new technologies, means TRCA has the technical know-how to work effectively with our partners to further the state-of-knowledge on stormwater management in Toronto and Region.

STEP team members collect stormwater data in the field
The multi-agency Sustainable Technologies Evaluation Program (STEP), led by TRCA, conducts research, monitoring and evaluation of green infrastructure and clean water technologies designed to manage stormwater runoff. In this photo, the STEP team downloads data from a water level logger in a nearby bioretention area.

Associated Documents

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TRCA Stormwater Management Criteria

The purpose of this document is to consolidate and build upon current design guidelines and requirements relating to Stormwater Management from watershed plans and hydrology studies, and provide additional and specific detail for those areas within TRCA’s jurisdiction.

TRCA Low Impact Development Stormwater Management Planning and Design Guide

This document has been developed as a tool to help developers, consultants, municipalities and landowners understand and implement sustainable stormwater planning and practices in the CVC and TRCA watersheds.

Through scientific data collection, TRCA’s Environmental Monitoring and Data Management team tell the stories about the changes affecting the natural areas and watercourses within our regions.  For more information, please visit our Web page, follow us on Twitter, subscribe to our Monitoring Matters e-newsletter, or visit our YouTube playlist