Water Sensitive SA

Detailed design of constructed stormwater treatment wetlands

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Detailed design of constructed stormwater treatment wetlands

L-R: Roy Amer Wetlands (City of Port Adelaide Enfield); Oaklands Park Wetland (Michael Mullan, City of Marion); Greenfields Wetlands (City of Salisbury)

L-R: Roy Amer Wetlands (City of Port Adelaide Enfield); Oaklands Park Wetland (Michael Mullan, City of Marion); Greenfields Wetlands (City of Salisbury)

Download Program – Detailed design of constructed stormwater treatment wetlands


Dr Peter Breen, Director, Urban Ecology & Water Resource Management, E2DesignLab

Dr Dale Browne, Senior Environmental Engineer, E2DesignLab

Learning objective

Learn how to design successful constructed stormwater wetlands that meet multiple design objectives, including:

  • Stormwater runoff pollution reduction
  • Long-term function
  • Ease of maintenance
  • Effective integration with public spaces and other infrastructure
  • High-amenity value

Who should attend?

Design engineers and landscape architects (local government and consulting)

Course content

  • conceptual design, including considerations for modelling via MUSIC
  • functional design to achieve multiple benefits including pollutant removal; ecological function; safety – community and maintenance/operational; cost effective asset management; and integration within public open spaces
  • detailed design including:
    • pre-treatment requirements, including sediment pond design.
    • hydrodynamic design considerations including : flow distribution, permanent pool depth, hydrologic regime, extended detention depth, open water, and inundation frequency to sustain wetland vegetation
    • design and sizing of connections between sediment ponds
    • design and sizing of macrophyte zones for optimal performance, including connections with sediment ponds
    • inlet design, including bypass mechanisms for high flows
    • outlet design, including to provide for suitable treatment and allow for maintenance by lowering the pool elevation inside the wetland
    • plant species selection for SA conditions and ecology
    • designing for access and maintenance provisions, including dewatering and monitoring
    • designing to minimise mosquito proliferation
  • case studies
  • landscape integration – examples of successful integration of wetlands within the urban landscape to provide multiple benefits

Core competencies attained

An understanding of:

  • the different wetland zones and their function: deep pools; transitions between deep and shallow water; shallow water; temporary inundation areas; and the upper bank that ties the wetland into its surroundings
  • vegetation for nutrient removal, bank stability and aesthetics suitable for each zone
  • growing medium specifications
  • inlet and outlet structures
  • opportunities for wetlands to provide greater amenity/ landscape value.

Learning activities

Design of a stormwater treatment wetland in pairs/small groups

Delivery method

  • face-to-face presentations
  • interactive discussions
  • workshop case studies

Learning resources

  • prepared presentations handout sheets
  • standard drawings including, but not limited to, inlet and outlet structures; typical wetland plan; and cross sections
  • references and texts
  • design checklists
  • prepared case studies
  • prepared activity sheets/exercises.

$275.00  (incl. GST) Water Sensitive SA investment partners (incl. Stormwater SA members)
$440.00 (incl. GST) Others

Presenters’ profiles

E2DesignLabs-Peter Breen small Dr Peter Breen

Peter has had a long-time interest in the integration of water science into the master planning and management of urban and rural catchments. Peter has experience in all sectors of the water industry – academia/research, government/industry, and consulting from a water supply, drainage, and wastewater perspective, spanning a 35-year career. Peter has published on aquatic botany, wetland, stream and lake ecology, stormwater and wastewater treatment, water quality management and restoration ecology and has authored or co-authored over 100 papers and delivered numerous presentations.

His research and design expertise has contributed to best practice stormwater management objectives and guidelines on the design of constructed wetlands, waterways, bioretention systems and lakes.

E2DesignLabs-Dale Browne smallDr Dale Browne

Dale is an Environmental Engineer with experience in WSUD and integrated water cycle management. He has been involved in the design and delivery of various water sensitive urban design assets including wetlands, rain gardens and stormwater harvesting both locally and internationally.

Dale has particular expertise in the creation, development and application of models for water sensitive urban design. He contributed to recent versions of MUSIC through research, specifications, implementation and testing. He has supported ongoing innovation in modelling efforts to understand interactions of WSUD with climate change, flood mitigation and soil moisture for tree health and recently developed the Wetland Analysis Tool for analysing wetland water level patterns.

Dale is committed to seeing the industry develop through training and has taught many industry professionals how to use MUSIC over the past decade. He also teaches Clearwater’s Stormwater Reuse course and lectures in water resources management and MUSIC modelling at Monash and Federation Universities.


The Lion Hotel
161 Melbourne Street
North Adelaide, SA 5006 Australia
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Register Now

Registration: 8:30am

25 February - 9:00am
25 February - 4:30pm
The Lion Hotel
161 Melbourne Street
North Adelaide

Acknowledgement of Country

Water Sensitive SA acknowledges Aboriginal people as the First Peoples and Nations of the lands and waters we live and work upon, and we pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging. We acknowledge and respect the deep spiritual connection and the relationship that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have to Country.