Design of two-layered porous landscaping detention basin

J. C.Y. Guo, S. M. Kocman, A. Ramaswami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Under the mandate of the Federal Clean Water Act, porous landscaping detention (PLD) has been widely used to increase on-site infiltration. A PLD system consists of a surface storage basin and subsurface filtering layers. The major design parameters for a PLD system are the infiltration rate on the land surface and the seepage rate through the subsurface medium. A low infiltration rate leads to a sizable storage basin while a high infiltration rate results in standing water if the subsurface seepage does not sustain the surface loading. In this study, the design procedure of a PLD basin is revised to take both detention flow hydrology and seepage flow hydraulics into consideration. The design procedure begins with the basin sizing according to the on-site water quality control volume. The ratio of design infiltration rate to sand-mix hydraulic conductivity is the key factor to select the thickness of sand-mix layer underneath a porous bed. The total filtering thickness for both sand-mix and gravel layers is found to be related to the drain time and infiltration rate. The recommended sand-mix and granite gravel layers underneath a PLD basin are reproduced in the laboratory for infiltration tests. The empirical decay curve for sand-mix infiltration rate was derived from the laboratory data and then used to maximize the hydraulic efficiency through the subsurface filtering layers. In this study, it is recommended that a PLD system be designed with the optimal performance to consume the hydraulic head available and then evaluated using the prolonged drain time for potential standing water problems under various clogging conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1268-1274
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Environmental Engineering
Issue number12
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Environmental Science
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Civil and Structural Engineering


  • Best Management Practice
  • Detention basins
  • Infiltration
  • Pavements
  • Porous media
  • Seepage
  • Stormwater management


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