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Montclair Township

Storm Sewers

Background Information
The Township’s storm sewer system includes approximately 2,500 roadway inlets and 42 miles of sewer pipes of varying size, which outlet to a combination of natural streams and stabilized (man-made) waterways – each passing into neighboring towns and eventually reaching the Passaic River. These streams and stabilized waterways run through backyards and Municipal parks. These waterways are tributaries to the Second River (Toney’s Brook, Nishuane Brook, and Crescent Brook), and Third River (Yantacaw Brook and Pearl River), within the Passaic River drainage basin.

Like many other northern New Jersey communities, our stormwater facilities were designed for conditions that existed fifty years or more ago, with some improvements made to accommodate the growth in intervening years. In Montclair, separate storm and sanitary sewer systems were developed, lessening the potential for basement flooding from stormwater overflows. However, the cumulative effect of continued development and redevelopment has been a steady increase in peak stream flows and localized street flooding during major storms. These conditions have also contributed to stream bank and outfall erosion, decreased infiltration and diminished groundwater recharge.

storm sewer litterWhat is Montclair Doing?
The Township has made significant progress addressing localized flooding problems by improving road profiles and adding storm drainage when constructing street improvements. Street improvement projects have included upgrading drainage in the Erwin Park neighborhood and in the Brookfield section, which experienced regular flooding during moderate storm events.

Recent changes in the State’s stormwater management regulations have also required the Township to invest in retrofitting storm inlets or catch basins to keep pollutants out of the storm sewer system. The downside to the new storm drains is that the blocked pollutants, typically leaves in fall, prevent water from entering the storm sewer system and creating new and occasionally more severe localized flooding.

What Can You Do?

• Do not dump anything into storm drains. These drains feed directly, untreated, into our surface waterways.

• Remove leaves and other debris that is obstructing catch basins, particularly if you are in an area subject to localized flooding. The debris can be bagged with your garbage or with leaves and/or other yard debris during the spring and fall.

• Report illegal dumping by calling Township Code Enforcement at 973-509-5721 or if a serious hazard, call NJ Department of Environmental Protection at 1-800-WARN-DEP.

Stormwater Pollution PDF Print E-mail

The water from rain and melting snow that flows over lawns, parking lots and streets is known as stormwater. This water, called runoff, travels along gutters, into catch basins and through storm drain pipes and ditches, and eventually discharges, untreated, into our streams and rivers. Along the way, the runoff picks up trash (fast-food wrappers, cigarette butts, styrofoam cups, etc.) and toxins (used motor oil, antifreeze, fertilizers, pesticides, pet droppings, etc.). The transport of these pollutants into local water bodies can result in the destruction of fish, wildlife, and habitats; threats to public health due to contaminated food and drinking water supplies; and losses of recreational and aesthetic values.