Date of Graduation

Spring 2014


Master of Natural and Applied Science in Geography, Geology, and Planning


Geography, Geology, and Planning

Committee Chair

Robert Pavlowsky


stormwater, urban runoff, low impact development, code barriers, MS4

Subject Categories

Hydrology | Urban, Community and Regional Planning | Water Resource Management


Stormwater runoff from urban areas is one of the major contributors to the impairment of the nation's waters. It mobilizes and transports a variety of pollutants into surface waters. In addition to degrading water quality, urban runoff also has geomorphic and hydrologic impacts on streams and is linked to declines in the health of aquatic communities. Low impact development (LID) is a land development approach that has been shown to be effective in minimizing these impacts by maintaining pre-development hydrology and water quality. Stormwater design criteria and techniques based on LID are increasingly recommended in federal and state guidance and have become required in some areas of the country. Local development codes can act as barriers to LID, such as codes that result in excess impervious cover or don't authorize and provide standards for LID practices. LID is on the rise but not yet mandated or in widespread use in Springfield, Missouri. The City of Springfield is under federal and state MS4 permit mandates to address the water quality impacts of urban runoff, including a proposed requirement to address LID code barriers. This thesis provides a review of Springfield's codes to identify LID barriers. Recommended code changes include narrower residential street widths, parking code changes, and authorizing the dual use of required landscape areas for stormwater management. These recommendations are intended to assist the City in making locally-appropriate code changes to remove LID barriers and support its more widespread use for water quality protection and improvement.


© Carrie Anne Lamb

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