June 12, 2023 Community Meeting Recap

Thank you to those who joined us earlier this week to learn more about the upcoming retrofit of an existing stormwater management facility in the Oxford Crossing community. If you missed the meeting, a copy of the presentation is available here on the project website. You can also see below the questions asked at the meeting, along with responses from our team.

Please feel free to contact us with any additional questions at info@GreenOxfordCrossing.com or via phone/text at 240-839-4770. You can also click here to sign up for project updates and future meeting alerts and here for additional project resources and information.

Questions asked by residents at the meeting

Why weren’t the other three ponds in the community chosen?

In accordance with the specific requirements and goals set forth in Montgomery County’s MS4 permit, the County regularly assesses all its watersheds to identify water quality improvement opportunities and develop implementation plans to control stormwater discharges. This pond was chosen because it has several structural deficiencies and does not treat pollutants in stormwater, thus providing the greatest opportunity for water quality improvements. Other ponds on-site either already provide water quality benefits or have constraints like utility lines, natural resources or construction access barriers that would make improvement a challenge.

Learn more about the County’s MS4 permit in our project FAQs or here in the County’s FY21 MS4 Permit Annual Report.

How many other similar projects are happening in Montgomery County today?

GreenVest is currently working on three stormwater management improvement projects in Montgomery County. While we do not have specific knowledge of other similar projects, the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection provides detailed information about watershed restoration, existing stormwater facilities and projects currently underway on its website.

Who will be responsible for removing trash and debris from the Submerged Gravel Stormwater Management System (SGSMS)?

After a one-year post-construction guarantee provided by GreenVest, Montgomery County will be responsible for structural maintenance of the SGSMS at Oxford Crossing, including semi-regular inspection to ensure its proper functioning. The OCCA will continue its existing obligation to perform non-structural maintenance at the facility.

In the first year after construction, GreenVest will:

  • Inspect the facility to assess functioning and check for erosion. This will ensure that inlets and outlets are functioning properly, the system is fully draining within 48 hours of a rain event and water quality improvement objectives are being achieved.
  • Remove sediment accumulation after major storm events, if needed.
  • Check for vegetation establishment and coverage, reseeding or replanting if necessary.
  • Perform periodic inspections between rainfall events to remove sediment and any invasive plant species and replant vegetation, as necessary.
  • Coordinate with the OCCA before each visit.

After the first year, Montgomery County’s Stormwater Facility Maintenance Program will be responsible for inspecting the facility at least once every three years to:

  • Assess its condition.
  • Address any required maintenance.
  • Clear debris and clogging from inlets and outlets.
  • Remove any accumulated vegetation.

Continued non-structural maintenance performed by the OCCA will include:

  • Grass cutting.
  • Trash removal.
  • Landscaping around the facility.

How will the County know when/how often to come out for maintenance? What happens if they don’t come out at all?

Per regulations set forth in its MS4 permit by the MDE and responsibilities outlined in its Grant of Storm Water Management Easement for this facility, the County is required to perform regular inspection and maintenance at this facility at least once every three years. Both the OCCA and individual residents can contact the County DEP with any questions or concerns related to maintenance of the facility and/or to alert the County to any perceived maintenance issues through this online complaint form or by emailing askdep@montgomerycountymd.gov.

How will construction access on Connecticut Avenue impact parking and access to the fire station?

Construction access along Connecticut Avenue will cause limited, if any, traffic or parking impacts for OCCA residents. Access is planned along a section of Connecticut Avenue where street parking is already restricted. GreenVest is working closely with Fire Station 25 to prevent interference with the performance of their duties, including Medivac access.  A detailed Maintenance of Traffic Plan will be prepared and coordinated with the fire station, shared with the OCCA residents and approved by Montgomery County.

Will construction affect the new black metal fencing or the old split rail fencing?

While construction is unlikely to affect the new black metal fencing, impacts to the split rail fencing may occur. Fencing within the construction area will be fully documented by video before construction begins. If accidental damage does occur or if it is determined that a section of the split rail fencing must be removed, the fence will be repaired/restored to its pre-construction condition or better.

Will there be noise during construction and if so, how will this be addressed?

There will be noise related to construction, which will occur primarily within an 8-10-week window in the middle of the construction period. GreenVest will alert residents in advance of any such construction-related events via the website and through email or text for those who have signed up to receive project communication.

In addition to compliance with standards set forth in the Montgomery County’s Noise Control Law, GreenVest may use (or consider as necessary) the following construction best practices to minimize potential noise disturbances:

  • Sound-attenuated pumps and other equipment designed to reduce noise impacts.
  • Safe and lawful alternatives to factory-installed backup beepers, such as flag persons, video systems or “smart alarms,” which instead of loud beeping, make less disruptive noise that is still capable of alerting individuals who may be within the path of a backing vehicle.
  • Reduce the slamming of tailgates on dump equipment.
  • Advise all delivery and onsite dump truck drivers of noise mitigation procedures prior to work.
  • Promote work quiet” standards by creating awareness within the work crew that noise control is an important part of the job and that they should work to be good neighbors during construction.
  • Avoid prolonged idling of equipment. 
  • Construction will be limited to the hours of 7 am to 5 pm during weekdays. Barring extenuating circumstances, no work will be conducted during the weekend or on County holidays.

What was the purpose of the soil boring process and soil testing? Will the community have access to the soil test results? Could anything be identified during this process that would result in the cancellation of this project?

Soil borings allow project engineers to sample and test soil texture, permeability and bearing capacity within the existing facility’s bottom, which informs the extent of excavation required for the retrofit specifically and helps guide project design generally. Sampling and testing will not evaluate the presence of contaminants in the soil or groundwater. It is unlikely that test results will prevent the project from moving forward. A final geotechnical report can be provided to residents on the project website.

Will additional testing be performed on-site?

Additional testing and/or assessment may be required on-site as design processes progress. Work will be coordinated with the OCCA and residents will be alerted in advance. While we do not expect the results of additional testing to prevent project execution, it could result in shifts to project design.

Does the existing pond collect offsite drainage?

The existing pond captures drainage from 32.11 acres of residential and commercial development, including 15.38 acres of untreated impervious area which flows to the Potomac River watershed, and eventually to the Chesapeake Bay. Approximately one-third of the facility’s drainage area includes Leisure World and other areas outside of the Oxford Crossing boundary. As rainwater flows over untreated impervious areas (hard surfaces and lawns) it picks up pollutants such as sediment, trash, pesticides from lawns, nutrients from fertilizer or pet waste, and oil and grease from cars. Retrofitting the existing pond to a SGSMS will help treat and remove these pollutants in stormwater before entering our streams and watersheds.

Is GreenVest aware of where the FIOS line is located on the property and in the right of way?  

Yes. Utilities including FIOS are located through a topographic survey.

Will the permanent pond access easement allow for public access?

The easement does not provide for public access. Fencing will be coordinated as the project moves forward to reduce unauthorized access.

Will removed trees be replanted in the same spot?

GreenVest prioritizes limited tree removal in project design. Any trees removed to provide permanent access to the facility will be replanted with native species near the project area. GreenVest understands and very much appreciates concerns related to the loss of trees that previously surrounded the dry pond after the installation of the black security fence and FIOS line. We will collaborate closely with the OCCA on the development of a “planting plan” for replacement of removed trees and for additional, new tree plantings on-site. Close consideration will be given to trees that provide natural screening for Oxford Crossing residents from Connecticut Avenue and Bel Pre Road.

Are there similar projects completed by GreenVest nearby that residents can visit?

The contract under which this work has been procured is among the first of its kind for the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection. Therefore, we do not have an extensive library of applicable local projects that can be accessed by the public. However, the engineers, scientists and subcontractors working with GreenVest on this project have partnered on several successful projects in the County. Similar work in Montgomery County can be found here on the County’s website. We are also working to prepare a summary of similar projects delivered by GreenVest outside of the County.

Who are GreenVest’s competitors? Who is completing other projects in Montgomery County?

GreenVest is a unique Maryland-based small business that provides full-delivery project implementation, which means that all project phases (site selection, design and permitting, construction, maintenance and monitoring) are completed under a single contract. While there are a few national competitors which provide similar full-delivery project services, GreenVest is the only Maryland-based small business among them. GreenVest is currently completing four water quality improvement projects under the County’s Stormwater Restoration Program. HGS, a national subsidiary of Resource Environmental Solutions, is also completing four water quality projects under this program. 

Regarding concerns about a sinkhole that occurred in the neighborhood 3 or 4 years ago:

GreenVest will coordinate with the County to determine what actions were taken to address the sinkhole. Based on that coordination, we will further investigate the issue to understand if and how it may need to be accounted for during construction.

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