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Sacramento Railyards

Sacramento, California



City of Sacramento


Kimley Horn & Associates; Baker Williams Engineering


Preston Pipelines; Teichert Construction



Technical Description:

(36+) Filterra® Bioretention Systems

The Sacramento Railyards is a 244-acre mixed-use redevelopment located at the former Union Pacific rail yard in downtown Sacramento, CA., and is the largest urban infill project in the country. The project transformed the site into a vibrant urban environment with housing, retail, office space, open space, entertainment and cultural venues, and riverfront amenities. The Railyards is a public-private partnership between Thomas Enterprises, Inc., the city of Sacramento, the state of California, and the United States government.

Engineers needed a small footprint treatment system that could be implemented along city streets and bridges and at grades where conventional bioretention could not be used. Engineers selected the Filterra Bioretention system based on its long-term cost-effectiveness and easy maintenance. Over 36 Filterra systems, each with an internal bypass, have been installed at the site within the last decade.

The Filterra systems were designed to blend in with the existing tree wells by using the same tree custom grates, lids, and vegetation. The other challenge that only Filterra could accommodate was placing the treatment controls on grade leading to and from the bridges. 

Contech provided full design support through many iterations that included complexities such as routing the drainage system through streets and bridges at a 5% grade. Contech also provided installation support along with activation and the first year’s maintenance.

The Sacramento Stormwater Quality Partnership has the most robust and comprehensive testing and evaluation protocol on the West Coast for proprietary stormwater treatment controls. The protocol requires testing and evaluation of a broad range of pollutants to stringent effluent requirements on two separate projects of differing land use. Filterra is only one of three proprietary treatment controls (with Contech's StormFilter being one of the others) that have met the protocol since its inception in 1999. 

Technical Description:

(36+) Filterra® Bioretention Systems

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