The Nutrient Management Facility located in Alexandria, VA, received the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure Envision Platinum award. The project, developed by Alex Renew Enterprises, is the first in Virginia and the Washington, D.C. metro area to earn an Envision award.
The Nutrient Management Facility stores wastewater to balance the amount of nitrogen that goes into Alex Renew Enterprises’ biological treatment process. Balancing nitrogen reduces the amount of chemicals and energy needed to clean water, and in turn, it helps reduce the amount of nitrogen discharged into the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
The Nutrient Management Facility preserves floodplain functions by avoiding new development within the floodplain. The project replaced acres of impervious surface with vegetated areas to restore infiltration and water quality functions. The project also removed a fish and sediment barrier that improved aquatic habitat connectivity and expanded a crucial wooded riparian buffer to enhance the natural habitat.
The project team permanently removed 85,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil from the site and selected only native plant species with high habitat value that require no pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers for the site’s landscaping, thereby protecting surface and groundwater contamination.
In all, the project includes 18 million gallons in tank capacity with associated pumps, chemical analysis equipment, and an extensive odor control system. It also includes a well-lit regulation athletic field located on top of the process tanks. By building the athletic field, the NMF project restored previously inaccessible land, and it added a recreational amenity to benefit the citizens of the City of Alexandria. The site plan includes a trail connection to a large greenspace that will be constructed within a mixed-use development in the adjacent property.
Alex Renew Enterprises developed the project with lead consultant CH2M as the largest portion of the award-winning State-of-the-Art Nitrogen Upgrade Program.
The ISI Envision rating system measures sustainable infrastructure projects in five categories: quality of life, leadership, natural world, resource allocation, and climate and risk. Learn more about Envision and ISI at sustainableinfrastructure.org.