Off to a great start!

As many of you know, we held our very first Urban Water Management conference and exposition this past March in Louisville, KY.

Jul 1st, 2008

by Angela Godwin

As many of you know, we held our very first Urban Water Management conference and exposition this past March in Louisville, KY. Urban Water Management, affectionately abbreviated UWM, is a brand new integrated water quality conference addressing the management and control of water in urban areas.

We were very pleased to have been able to offer such a comprehensive conference agenda, focusing on topics such as stormwater BMPs, stormwater treatment, hydraulic modeling, low impact development, and watershed management.

The conference was sponsored by the Louisville/Jefferson County Metropolitan Sewer District. Derek Guthrie, the District's chief engineer and a phenomenal public speaker, kicked off the event with a welcome address in which he gave an overview of the current urban water management efforts underway in the city.

Following Derek's presentation, Tom Schueler, founder of the Center for Watershed Protection and currently the founder and director of the Chesapeake Stormwater Network, delivered the keynote address. His presentation, called "From Roof to Stream to Roof," took a look at some new concepts for protecting and restoring urban watersheds.

Unfortunately, I only have limited space here, so I can't really go into a ton of detail about all the highlights of the show — but I would be remiss if I didn't mention the panel discussion on stormwater utility funding initiatives. Tony Bagwell (HDR), Pete Yakimowich (Arcadis), Steve Veal (Jacobs Carter Burgess) and Allen Mullins (PROS Consulting LLC) conducted a very informative and interactive session on various ways communities can address paying for setting up a stormwater utility.

In addition to the conference, UWM also featured exhibits from a number of stormwater management industry vendors, including BaySaver, Brentwood Industries, CrystalStream Technologies, GE Water & Process Technologies, Hydro International, and many more. And of course, I should take a moment to thank the companies who sponsored UWM: Contech, Hach/Marsh McBirney, One Rain, Johnson Screens, HDR, Myron L, and StormTrap. You guys are awesome!

Another cool thing happened at UWM: a new association was born. The MWQPA (Manufactured Water Quality Products Association), which is headed by John Moll, CEO of CrystalStream Technologies, held its first organizational meeting. If you haven’t yet heard of MWQPA, you will. Keep your eyes and ears open!

All in all, over 300 water professionals — including engineers, consultants, municipal employees, and contractors — turned out for UWM. A number of folks went out of their way to let me know they enjoyed the conference, which after a year of planning, is always nice to hear.

Still, that's no excuse to rest on our laurels. Planning for UWM 2009 began even before 2008 concluded, and it's shaping up to be a terrific event. It will take place March 23-26, 2009, in Overland Park, KS, and our sponsoring utility is the City of Independence, MO, Water Pollution Control Department.

We've just issued our call for papers, which you can check out on our website (www.urbanwatermgt.com). We encourage anyone looking to share his or her expertise with colleagues to submit a presentation (although, by the time you read this, the deadline will be fast approaching, so do hurry!).

I hope you'll check us out next year in Overland Park. In the meantime, if you have any questions about the upcoming event, don't hesitate to drop me a line at angelag@pennwell.com.

Angela Godwin
Editor, Urban Water Management

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