Converting from Water Quality to Flood Protection Status to Protect Tampa Bay, Homes and Businesses

Similar Hurricane Prep Underway at Babcock Ranch Smart Ponds

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (September 26, 2022) – The National Stormwater Trust, Inc. (NST) has activated its Hurricane Preparation Plan and is actively preparing to convert its Tampa Bay-area Smart Pond from water quality to flood protection status in order to increase stormwater storage capability for Hurricane Ian. Converting to flood protection status will allow this cutting-edge technology to better protect Tampa Bay and area homes and businesses from stormwater that will result from Hurricane Ian.


“Our Smart Pond technology is monitoring weather forecasts and predicting stormwater volume that will be needed to help prevent runoff from entering Tampa Bay and homes and businesses near the Bay,” said Jeff Littlejohn, National Stormwater Trust Co-Founder. “This cutting-edge technology allows us to remotely release clean water from the pond in order to make room for anticipated heavy rain and stormwater runoff from Hurricane Ian.”


NST and its cloud-based stormwater management system is strengthening water quality and providing flood resiliency at levels not achievable with a conventional stormwater pond. By leveraging real-time weather forecasting and automated flood controls, the water level in Smart Ponds is actively managed to maximize its water quality treatment and flood protection performance.


The Tampa Bay-area Smart Pond is located adjacent to Port Tampa Bay on State Road 45. Water quality and flood resiliency outcomes at the SR 45 Smart Pond are providing stronger environmental benefits for Tampa Bay over a conventional stormwater pond, including:

  •      +2.73 AC-FT in Additional Treatment Volume
  •      44% Increase in Nitrogen Removal
  •      +4.39 AC-FT Controllable Flood Attenuation Volume
  •      84% Increase in Flood Attenuation Volume


The SR 45 Smart Pond adjacent to Port Tampa Bay will be fully converted to flood protection status 12 hours before heavy rainfall begins.


NST Smart Ponds located at Babcock Ranch are undergoing similar hurricane preparation efforts, with local water managers tapping into the NST data to determine the appropriate time to lower area lakes.


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