The Water Quality Division’s mission is to manage County stormwater systems to prevent flooding and property damage and to protect water quality for the safety and enjoyment of the citizens of St. Lucie County and for the preservation of the environment and enhancement of wildlife habitat.
In June 1997, the St. Lucie County Commission adopted a Stormwater Management Program for the unincorporated portion of the County. Water Quality Division programs include regulation, construction, operation and maintenance of the County stormwater management system. The cities of Ft. Pierce, Port St. Lucie and St. Lucie Village carry out most of the stormwater management responsibilities within their corporate boundaries. In the unincorporated portion of the County, stormwater management responsibilities are shared by the South Florida Water Management District, the North St. Lucie River Water Control District, Fort Pierce Farms Water Control District and St. Lucie County.
Stormwater and Driveway Permits
The Water Quality Division reviews, inspects and approves Stormwater permits and Driveway permits for new development and redevelopment as required by the St. Lucie County Land Development Code.
Platt’s Creek and Indian River Estates Stormwater Pumpstations
The Water Quality Division is responsible for the operation and maintenance of the Platt’s Creek stormwater treatment area and the Indian River Estates pump station. The Platt’s Creek project provides water quality treatment for an approximately 1,000 acre drainage area prior to discharging to the North Fork of the St. Lucie River. The recently completed mitigation area of this project includes the restoration of wetlands that will provide additional treatment prior to discharging to the North Fork.
The Indian River Estates pump station and wet detention area provides water quality and flood protection for an approximately 1,200 acre neighborhood prior to discharging to the Savannas State Preserve. Both projects provide much needed stormwater treatment where none was previously provided and will aid in achieving water quality standards mandated under the Federal Clean Water Act.
Drainage Retrofits and Maintenance
The Water Quality Division manages a construction crew that performs drainage retrofits and maintenance in existing neighborhoods to enhance water quality treatment and flood control in existing neighborhoods. Currently, this crew is working on the White City Drainage Improvement Project near the intersection of Oleander Avenue and Saeger Avenue. This project drains a 41-acre basin into a wet detention pond which provides water quality treatment and flood protection for a historically low-lying area. Upon completion of construction, passive recreation amenities and public information components are planned for the pond site, in order to create a neighborhood park that will be an amenity to the residents.
Enhanced Swale Maintenance Program
Drainage swales are the primary method used to convey and treat stormwater runoff in many neighborhoods in St. Lucie County. Over time, drainage swales can become clogged and require maintenance to perform properly. The enhanced swale maintenance program ensures that routine maintenance is performed on existing drainage swales throughout the County. The Water Quality Division oversees the management and operation of the contractor performing this work for the County.
National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System Permit
The County stormwater management system is regulated by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System program. Key components include: public education and outreach; public involvement and participation; illicit discharge detection and elimination; construction site stormwater runoff control; stormwater management for new development and redevelopment; and pollution prevention and good housekeeping practices in County operations. On May 15, 2007 Ordinance 07-005 was adopted establishing the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System program in St. Lucie County.