Celebrating National Water Quality Month

Date: August 22, 2022

August is National Water Quality Month which highlights the importance of safeguarding water; one of the most valuable resources in the world. The water industry has made significant strides in improving water quality over the past several decades, however, in today’s ever changing regulatory environment, practical and timely solutions for clean water are imperative to help protect consumers and the environment.

Our Professionals are committed every day to providing clean water in the many communities we serve. SCE’s substantial resume of recent water infrastructure improvement projects range in size, scope, and complexity and includes services such as Combined Sewer Separation (CSO), Water and Wastewater Treatment, Green Infrastructure, Flood Hazard Mitigation, and Environmental Remediation. SCE is proud to be a leader in the water industry, working together with our Clients, colleagues, peers, and members of the public on our global mission to provide reliable, clean, and safe water.

Project Spotlights:

CSO Separation

Project Name: Main Street Sewer Separation, Streetscape, & Two-way Conversion / Clay Street Sewer Separation

Client: City of Hackensack, NJ

cso-separation - hackensack-nj

SCE provides professional services to the City of Hackensack (City), a New Jersey CSO community, for the implementation of their Long Term Control Plan (LTCP) which is to be completed in stages.  The first stage of this plan consisted of a CSO sewer separation project along Main Street, concurrent with a streetscape improvement project. The second stage is a multi-phase CSO sewer separation along Clay Street, making significant progress on separating combined sewers by adding stormwater culverts that address flood mitigation in low lying areas across the overburdened communities of the City.  These sewer separation efforts have a specific focus on water quality, as the new stormwater conveyance system is equipped with water quality measures to ensure the water reaching the Hackensack River meets the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) standards.  SCE staged and positioned the City to receive Principal Forgiveness (PF) for the above projects on an annual State Fiscal Year basis with an aggregate amount of PF exceeding $10M over the past four (4) years.  The range of services SCE is provides to the City associated with the implementation of the LTCP includes planning, design, permitting, and financing through the Water Infrastructure Investment Plan (WIIP) and Congressional Appropriations. Additionally our team is providing an added level of efficiency by incorporating GIS as-builts of the Capital Improvements and serving as the Licensed Operator of the sewer collection system.

Through SCE’s comprehensive planning and design the City is achieving significant water quality improvements ahead of required timeframes.

Water Treatment

Project Name: Well No. 21R – 1,4, Dioxane

Client: Township of Parsippany – Troy Hills, NJ

SCE is currently providing professional engineering services to the Township of Parsippany – Troy Hills for the evaluation, permitting, and design of the Well No. 21R Replacement Project. In accordance with the NJDEP regulations, SCE is designing treatment for the current ground water quality at this Well Facility, along with the additional treatment for the removal of 1,4 Dioxane (an emergent contaminant). The project design includes the installation of a new well (and pitless adapter), modifications to the existing facility, installation of a new treatment building housing the UV advanced oxidation environment, installation of a new outdoor generator, and associated appurtenances.

Additionally, SCE performed an environmental investigation and wetland delineation to identify the environmental constraints of the site, which determined that the site contains freshwater wetlands and its associated buffer area covers almost the entire site. Due to the environmental constraints of the site, additional environmental coordination and permitting was required, including the use of NJDEP Freshwater Wetlands Transition Area Waiver/Redevelopment permit and a General Permit No. 2.

Wastewater Treatment

Project Name: Package Wastewater Treatment Plant Replacement

Client: Private

SCE is providing professional engineering services for a 25,000 gallon/day Wastewater Treatment Plant Rehabilitation Project located in the Township of Clinton. The plant has reached its useful life, with major components requiring complete replacement.  Concurrent with the need for replacements, the proposed discharge permit anticipates more stringent limits on phosphorus levels, in addition to ongoing limits for TSS, Ammonia, Nitrate, CBOD, DO, and other constituents.

SCE evaluated several package treatment plant options and processes to develop the optimal treatment approach that achieves the required discharge limits, while enabling operations staff to more efficiently operate and maintain the plant, along with lower energy costs.  Balancing these project goals with the physical constraints of maintaining operations during construction and not distributing the surrounding flood plain and wetlands. The project design includes a limited footprint of disturbance, respect for the flood hazard resiliency requirements, and  an expedited schedule to comply with the new permit limits.

Green Infrastructure

Project Name: Miller Park Playground

Client: City of Elizabeth, NJ

SCE was selected by the City of Elizabeth to provide engineering and landscape architecture design services for the preparation of construction drawings and construction observation and administration services for the improvements to Miller Park. The site was treated as a blank canvas and was completely re-designed. Improvements included a new basketball and volleyball courts, exercise station area, splash pad, playground equipment for 2-5-year-olds and 5-12-year-olds, multiple seating areas, center shade structure, extensive landscaping, maintenance building, walkways, entry portals, stormwater management and site furnishings.

The Green Infrastructure (GI) elements designed and installed collect runoff from the spray park, as well as storm water runoff from the pathways, the gazebo and picnic area and disperses the runoff via a system of subsurface PVC pipes to the landscaping located throughout the park’s southern and western perimeters. The water is distributed through a gravity system that does not require any pumps or energy to enable the system to perform similar to a drip irrigation system. SCE also designed two “demonstration” rain gardens in the park that collect and infiltrate storm water. These GI elements reduce the overall quantity of stormwater that would flow into the City’s Combined Sewer Outfall (CSO) system. Educational signage at the site explains the process of water infiltration and reuse of stormwater for irrigation purposes and the ability to use the stormwater runoff as a resource for the park. Portions of the park include pervious synthetic turf surfaces that collect stormwater, provide storage in the stone layer beneath the synthetic turf, and promote infiltration into the existing soils on the site.  Facilities such as the volleyball court and adjacent landscape include synthetic turf surfaces with stone subgrades and subsurface infiltration basins under the synthetic turf court top reduce stormwater leaving the site and entering the City’s combined sewer system. 



Project Name: Southwest Block 12 Park

Client: City of Hoboken, NJ

SCE was selected by the City of Hoboken (City) to provide engineering assistance during construction and construction observation and administration services for Southwest Park. The Park overall design was prepared by the firm Starr Whitehouse, and SCE provided services throughout the construction phase. 

The park includes Green Infrastructure (GI) elements that prevent the runoff of stormwater and store more than 71,000 gallons of rainwater in subsurface detention basins under the surface of the park.  Rain gardens capture, store and infiltrate more than 10,500 gallons. Pervious pavements, vegetated street bioswales, and a cellular tree planting system with subsurface rainwater storage provide the park enhancements that reduce runoff and prevent stormwater from entering the City’s combined sewer system.

Flood Hazard Mitigation

Project Name: Hurricane Ida Restoration and Resiliency Efforts

Client: City of Lambertville, NJ

During the fall of 2021, the City of Lambertville (City) experienced historical flooding and property damage due to Hurricane Ida.  SCE aided the City in securing alternative federal funding to tackle post-storm repairs and mitigate against future natural disasters, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service – Emergency Watershed Protection Program (EWP) and the Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP). Through the EWP program the City will be reimbursed for 75%, $1.3 million, of construction costs and 10%, $130,425, in technical assistance. Additionally, the HMGP will reimburse 90% of total project costs, approximately $1 million. Both funding programs have strict project timelines and milestones to secure funding. SCE’s project team has leveraged our expertise in navigating environmental and multijurisdictional boundaries to ensure project completion.

Projects are underway to restore and better protect the stream beds, culverts, and structures from erosion, sediment transport, overtopping, and structural damage to neighboring properties.  Stormwater conveyance and erosion control are critical to the City’s resiliency and flood protection, and SCE’s swift assessments, design, emergency permitting, funding assistance, bid, and construction phase services are restoring the City’s infrastructure to enhance water quality of the tributaries that flow through the City to the Delaware River.

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