AET Group protects its home from water
AET Group Inc. (AET) is an environmental consulting, auditing and scientific services firm founded in 1998. Their head office in Kitchener is in a 135-year-old former farmhouse. They have remodeled it to rival some of the leading buildings built today in terms of its energy and water efficiency. LED lighting, and a planned addition of a ‘living wall’ to improve indoor air quality are among the many features that are or will soon be integrated into the building. As part of their work, AET is often asked to provide stormwater impact monitoring and water quality assessments. With this project, AET has taken the plunge to address stormwater problems on their own property.
The former farmhouse is now surrounded by development on all sides. The property has been paved over as a parking lot for their employees. Any rain that falls on the property flows over hard surfaces into the storm sewer carrying with it any oil and grit from the parking lot. Large storm events have caused flooding and water damage in the basement with the potential to form mould. AET Group wanted to improve the quality of the water and reduce the overall volume flowing from their property without sacrificing any parking spaces.
- Location: 531 Wellington Street North, Kitchener
- Maximum Capacity: 4,200L
- Estimated Diversion Per Year: 205,000 L
- Awards and Certifications
- Environment & Sustainability Award, Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards (2009, 2012)
- Green Team of the Year – Regional Carbon Initiative: Sustainable Waterloo Region (2014)
A RAIN Business Visit evaluated the water issues and came up with some recommendations to address the problems and maximize stormwater credits for the site. AET consulted RAIN’s Service Provider List to find a landscaping professional and hired Thompson Environmental Planning & Design Ltd. for the technical design and project installation.
70% of the stormwater on AET’s property will be captured in their new system, which includes a:
- A 500L stone forebay which filters debris
- A 1m x 12m planter box bioswale designed to catch, soak up, and treat 1,300L of stormwater flowing from their rooftop and parking lot. Only a small amount of asphalt had to be removed to install the bioswale and rain garden, and no parking spaces will be lost. The property is now eligible for stormwater credits from the City of Kitchener.
- Overflows into a 2,400L rain garden captures excess water and allows it to infiltrate and recharge groundwater before it can flow into the storm sewer.
More on sustainable living