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Construction Stormwater Toolbox

About This Page

Owner/operators with projects covered under the State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (SPDES) General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activity (the Construction Permit) are required to develop and implement a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) that meets criteria set forth by New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (Department). All SWPPPs must include practices consistent with the New York Standards and Specifications for Erosion and Sediment Control. Many construction sites must also comply with the New York State Stormwater Management Design Manual to address post-construction stormwater discharges.

This page provides links to sources of technical information needed to comply with the requirements of the Construction Permit and references that are useful for the design of stormwater management practices. Although it is primarily intended as a resource for consultants and other design professionals, it may also be helpful to local officials and others involved with stormwater management. Among those points of interest to stakeholders, is the Construction Notice of Intent (NOI) Database, which includes information provided to the Department in NOIs submitted to obtain coverage under the Construction Permit.

Design Standards

  • New York State Standards and Specifications for Erosion and Sediment Control (Blue Book), November, 2016 version - The "Blue Book" provides standards and specifications for the selection, design and implementation of erosion and sediment control practices for the development of Erosion and Sediment Control Plans for the SPDES General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activity. The Blue Book was updated in 2016 to address EPA's Effluent Limitation Guidelines (published in December, 2009), advancements in technology and issues that had been identified by stakeholders that use the document.
    Note: The July 2016 version of the Blue Book was updated in November 2016 to make several minor corrections. See the back of the cover page for a list of changes.
  • New York State Standards and Specifications for Erosion and Sediment Controls (August, 2005) -The previous version of the Blue Book currently referenced in the SPDES General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activity (CGP). The 2005 version of the Blue Book will be available for download until the CGP is modified.
  • New York State Stormwater Management Design Manual (January, 2015) provides standards and specifications for selection and design of stormwater management practices to comply with State stormwater management performance standards. The Design Manual was updated in 2015 to include the addition of pond safety provisions in Chapter 6, updated isohyet maps in Chapter 4 and clarification of sizing criteria in Chapters 3, 4, 9, and 10 to be consistent with recent changes to Construction General Permit (GP-0-15-002).
  • Proprietary Practices for Stormwater Management - This page provides the criteria and process to use a proprietary practice for stormwater management on regulated construction projects..

Additional Tools

  • Runoff Reduction Criteria Design Tools - Worksheets, design example, and instructions to assist designers with Runoff Reduction Criteria.
  • Stream Order - Use the off-site link on the right to access the Center for Educational Technologies' guidance on identifying stream order.
  • Pond Design - Practice Code 378 Conservation Practice Standard..This standard provides Practice Standards and Practice Specifications for the design of ponds.
    Use the off-site link on the right hand side of this page to access the Field Office Technical Guides (FOTGs) available on United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) website. The Pond Design standards are included in Part IV of the FOTGs.
  • NRCS TR-55 - Is a hydrologic computation method utilized in the design of stormwater management practices. Use the link to the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) WinTR-55 web page to access downloadable versions of WinTR-55 program and support materials.
  • Better Site Design (PDF) - April 17, 2008 - Entire document (2.25 MB). This document provides guidance to developers and designers to plan for and implement environmentally sound designs for new development and redevelopment projects while reducing the effects of stormwater runoff through both regulatory and non-regulatory techniques. Use the links below to view or download the document in smaller files.
  • Deep-Ripping and Decompaction (PDF) (599 KB) - The two phase practice of 1) Deep Ripping and 2) Decompaction (deep subsoiling) of the soil material as a step in the cleanup and restoration/landscaping of a construction site, helps mitigate the physically induced impacts of soil compression (i.e. soil compaction or the substantial increase in the bulk density of the soil material. Click on the link to access this downloadable report.

Other Assistance Information

  • Construction Stormwater Inspection Manual (PDF) (59.7 KB)- This manual is for use of state or municipal construction inspectors in performing compliance inspections, as well as for site operators in performing self-inspections. An inspection form, used by MS4s to document inspections of constructions sites is included in the manual.
  • Stormwater Interactive Map - The interactive map includes information such as:
    • Coordinates needed to complete Notices of Intent
    • Regulated MS4 Areas
    • Watershed Improvement Strategy Areas
    • The 303(d) waterbodies included in Appendix E of the Construction Permit
    • AA and AAs Watersheds
    • DEC Regional Boundaries
    • Information on Authorized Construction Projects

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Construction NOI Database

The NOI Database contains information provided to the Department by owner/operators of construction projects in the Notices of Intent submitted to gain coverage under the General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activity. The database includes details such as location, acreage, land use information, receiving water, construction and port-construction stormwater management practices. County by county files can be accessed through the Stormwater Permit Info link on the left hand side of the Stormwater Interactive Map.

Construction Stormwater Links