Detroit-based Parjana Distribution LLC is partnering with Lawrence Technological University (LTU) on a pilot project that involves testing a new stormwater drainage system for parking lots that is expected to significantly reduce stormwater runoff volumes. The technology, named energy-passive groundwater recharge products (EGRPs), includes 31.75mm-diameter hydrophobic, polyethylene tubes composed of five chambers and open channels along the edges. Designed to handle up to an inch of rain (25 mm) during a 24-hour period, EGRPs facilitate underground water recharge by balancing soil moisture and promoting movement of water between horizontal soil layers.

The pilot project is slated for a series of demonstrations in partnership with universities in Ohio, Washington, D.C., California, and Florida. The first demonstration was installed last December in an LTU parking area.

Each EGRP installation requires a 2-m (6-ft) deep excavation spanning 6 × 7.6 m (20 × 25 ft) that is covered with permeable pavement. Engineered with flexibility, the drainage system can be installed independently or in conjunction with gray or other green water management systems including best management practices.

At each site, researchers will use monitoring equipment to collect performance data from the EGRP systems. Results will be published alongside design guidelines with the goal to create a new national standard in stormwater design.