Civil Engineering

Sustainable/Low-Impact Design

Nearly 10 million people are living in Michigan right now, yet we are just a tiny fraction of the 6.5 billion people that live on planet Earth. But when it comes to valuable and precious natural resources, our state is uniquely situated along the shores of one of the most significant supplies of fresh water in the world.

Over 99 percent of all water is not readily available for our use – it comes in the form of salt water (oceans), ice (glaciers and icebergs), and atmospheric moisture. The useable surface water in lakes and streams is less than one percent of all the available water on earth – and the Great Lakes of Michigan contain 20 percent of the world’s surface fresh water!

We are fortunate to live alongside such a vast and important resource, and we realize that it must be protected. While conventional engineering design seeks to control stormwater runoff so that it does not become a “nuisance” to people and their properties, our engineering group looks at every drop of water as a resource that needs to be protected and preserved. After all, our children, grandchildren and future generations should also be able to enjoy the beautiful resources that we are blessed with. This is the core essence of sustainability: meet the needs of today, yet preserve our resources for tomorrow’s generation.

To accomplish sustainability, Nederveld utilizes Low Impact Development (LID) techniques and practices. The goal of an LID site is to model the site after nature. Rainfall runoff is managed at or near the source using design techniques such as rain gardens, bio-swales and retention systems that infiltrate, filter, store, evaporate and detain runoff close to its source. These techniques help treat and clean stormwater runoff, recharge groundwater supplies and keep our lakes and streams pristine and beautiful.

Our experience in protecting Michigan’s environment has led to opportunities in other states. In other parts of the country, the water supply is much more scarce.  As a result, sustainability becomes even more crucial. Our company is experienced in designing systems that capture rainwater and store it for future use. This helps protect groundwater reserves. We also design bio-retention systems that treat runoff water and recharge streams and groundwater supplies. Through our continued efforts in sustainability and Low Impact Design, our clients continue to achieve greater project success – both in the present and for generations to come.