The Clean Water Partnership

Prince Georges County, Maryland

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The Clean Water Partnership connects private sector resources with public sector challenges to provide solutions through a programmatic perspective and approach. Prince George’s County, Maryland, the first municipality to pursue the Community Based Public Private Partnership (CBP3) model developed by the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Region 3, selected Corvias as its private partner to retrofit an initial 2,000 acres of stormwater infrastructure with LID/ GI BMPs. Endorsed by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), this pilot demonstrates the complete solution available to municipalities by utilizing alternative P3 and funding strategies in order to meet obligations under the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) and achieve compliance with the EPA Clean Water Act mandates within federal government timelines.

This project, occurring throughout Prince George’s County, MD, involves Countywide planning and development services. Working as a coordinated team involving our program’s design engineers, construction professionals, maintenance organizations, and local consultants, Corvias has developed a three-year, $100 million master plan which divides funds into functional-specific outcomes. Our team has worked with County agencies to obtain all necessary permits to perform work on stormwater, sewer, and other utility systems that affect the overall community connectivity.

This project, occurring throughout Prince George’s County, MD, involves Countywide planning and development services. Working as a coordinated team involving our program’s design engineers, construction professionals, maintenance organizations, and local consultants, Corvias has developed a three-year, $100 million master plan which divides funds into functional-specific outcomes. Our team has worked with County agencies to obtain all necessary permits to perform work on stormwater, sewer, and other utility systems that affect the overall community connectivity.

The CWP is a Design-Build-Operate-Maintain (DBOM) community-based publicprivate partnership (CBP3) with Corvias as the program manager in partnership with the County, collaborating on the administration and decision-making process, thus creating transparency in the program. Corvias is responsible for implementing best management practice (BMP) projects and their maintenance throughout their 30-year lifecycle as approved by the DOE. The County provides funds to implement projects through the Clean Water Act Fee. The goals for implementing BMPs are listed in the Master Program Agreement, and the goals for the long-term maintenance of BMPs are listed in the Master Maintenance Agreement. Corvias is supported by contractors approved by the County for design, construction, and maintenance of BMPs and receives compensation, and potentially incentive fees, based on performance goals, which also include socioeconomic goals. Corvias is responsible for maintaining the BMPs for 30 years.

Throughout this 30-Year, $100 Million partnership, Prince George’s County retains control of assets, investments, and prioritization for the full program of work. Together, Prince George’s County and CWP are better able to achieve social, economic, and infrastructure benefits that go well beyond the industry’s standard measurement of cost-per-acre.

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The Partnership’s procurement method provides a distinct financing advantage to the County that it could not fully realize on its own. This project delivery method used by the Partnership (e.g. streamlined permitting, project aggregation, etc.) enables it to execute large scopes of work and create the scale needed to take advantage of low-cost financing options offered by a State Revolving Fund (SRF).

The performance goal of the pilot is to treat, operate, and maintain annual runoff, retain one inch of runoff, and achieve effective annual load reductions of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment to meet requirements related to the Chesapeake Bay TMDL and local water quality. This CBP3 model leverages the county’s funds from local stormwater utility fees with private equity. Prince George’s County Department of Environmental Resources (DER) benefits from the CBP3 with Corvias by reducing the administrative and procurement costs of green infrastructure practices, and creating efficiencies only available through private business and market forces.

By reinvesting the cost savings, the county expects to retrofit more of the 15,000 acres remaining to be converted, thereby increasing the environmental benefits. Driven by the MS4 permit requirements and the county’s stormwater utility fee, the Partnership Agreement between Prince George’s County and Corvias ensures: total funds raised up front are protected for stormwater retrofit use design-build-operate-maintain; MS4 permit requirements are met and accounted for in a more timely fashion; and implementation is fee-driven (i.e., the greater the degree of savings by the private partner, the more additional dollars to reinvest in additional retrofits/implementation). Further, Corvias has implemented a design-build approach encompassing design and construction management of stormwater and green infrastructure projects. Having assembled a team of proven engineering and construction professionals, we are providing comprehensive cost estimating, project scoping, scheduling, and quality oversight on each effort under this project. This approach involves the development of an integrated project team to deliver Prince George’s County with streamlined communication and updated project information.

This project encompasses community resilience, stormwater, and green infrastructure development throughout Prince George’s County, MD. As such, it is providing a broad spectrum of neighborhoods and communities with improved roads, ponds, pipes, bioretention systems, and other high-efficiency infrastructure. By focusing development in key areas, Corvias is directing financial and technical resources into underdeveloped communities, providing the impetus for further economic and environmental development in the future, in addition to investment in local schools and workforce organizations to support future job creation and improve the County’s educational opportunities. Corvias is designing and constructing improvements to support local community amenities including public schools, green spaces, town recreational facilities, ponds and wetlands, and neighborhood community areas. These amenities support community connectivity and provide residents with opportunities for recreation and improvements to overall quality of life.