DC Hilltop Campus Illustrative Stormwater Master Plan DC Hilltop Campus Illustrative Stormwater Master Plan DC Hilltop Campus Illustrative Stormwater Master Plan

DC’s Department of General Services’ Hilltop Campus Stormwater Master Plan Wins ACEC/MW Engineering Excellence Award

The Hilltop Campus Stormwater Master Plan won a 2024 Engineering Excellence Honor Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies of Metropolitan Washington (ACEC/MW). The award recognizes Nitsch for our comprehensive and forward-thinking approach to stormwater management at a campus scale, in collaboration with architects VMDO and Bell Architects and project owner D.C. Department of General Services (DGS).

The 28-acre Hilltop Campus hosts a number of academic and community training facilities – including the Spingarn School, Phelps High School, Browne Educational Campus, Two Rivers Charter School, DC Street Car Site, and Swing Site – as well as associated open space and roadways.

In partnership with D.C. Public Schools (DCPS), DGS sought to renovate the historic Spingarn School on the Hilltop Campus as part of the D.C. Infrastructure Academy (DCIA) initiative. With this project, DGS saw an additional opportunity to explore options for addressing stormwater management at a campus scale as opposed to an individual site or project scale – one of the first steps taken to do so on one of their campuses. To assist DGS in this effort, Nitsch provided civil engineering and planning services to develop the Stormwater Management Master Plan for the Hilltop Campus to support the DCIA Spingarn High School renovation project.

The Hilltop Campus Stormwater Management Master Plan provides a holistic vision and long-term goals for managing stormwater on campus and identifies opportunities for considering stormwater improvements at the campus scale. It recommends a phased approach and strategies for treating and managing stormwater on campus over time through the implementation of capital improvements and stormwater retrofit projects, as well as potential partnering opportunities with adjacent landowners.

The Hilltop Campus Stormwater Management Master Plan also develops guidelines for obtaining Stormwater Retention Credits (SRCs). It outlines opportunities for DGS to generate SRCs as part of regulated projects on campus and voluntary green infrastructure retrofit projects (onsite and offsite), and how these credits can be reused and/or traded through Washington, D.C.’s Stormwater Retention Credit Trading Program. The Plan also supports the DCIA’s academic mission by recommending a number of educational programs, partnerships, and learning/training options for those on campus.

The Hilltop Campus Stormwater Master Plan creates a vision of a campus that holistically manages stormwater and provides a more sustainable, beneficial environment for all – all thanks to the collaborative team that included:

Owner: D.C. Department of General Services
Architects: VMDO and Bell Architects
Landscape Architect: Landscape Architecture Bureau
Archaeologist: Elizabeth Anderson Comer/Archaeology

Update May 15, 2024: We’re thrilled to share that this project also received an ACEC Engineering Excellence National Recognition Award!