This bioretention gallery will infiltrate and treat storm water from an 88 hectare site with planned industrial development and agricultural land use. After infiltration through EcoMedia, the storm water will naturally percolate into the local aquifer, removing unwanted pollutants. In total, the Abbotsford-Sumas Aquifer supplies drinking water to approximately 100,000 people.
The Abbotsford-Sumas Aquifer is a particularly sensitive water source as it is very close to the surface and its shallow depth limits the opportunities for treatment of industrial and agricultural contaminants which include heavy metals, hydrocarbons, suspended solids, road salts, nutrients, trace pesticides and fertilizers.
The City of Abbotsford commissioned a study to test the various properties of several infiltration media options for use in the storm water retention and infiltration system. EcoMedia demonstrated its superior performance in terms of water quality, hydraulic conductivity and support of plant growth. Laboratory test results showed EcoMedia displayed dramatically lower rates of leaching nitrate, nitrite and RKN, while other media released significant amounts of these excess nutrients for up to 4 years after installation.