From RiverLink, shared Aug. 24:

RiverLink has developed a Guide to Stormwater Management for Residential Homes. Our new homeowners manual focuses on homes with small scale and less technical means of dealing with water issues, thanks to a grant from the Pigeon River Fund.

How many times have you heard, “oh, basements just get wet here” or “how can I figure out the drainage issue on my property”? There are numerous resources available via the web to learn how to manage the water on your property, yet many of them require special expensive expertise to understand the process.

RiverLink specifically designed WaterRICH, to assist homeowners in understanding rainwater management and conservation techniques that will help recycle and infiltrate water right in their own yards. WaterRICH is a unique RiverLink Initiative to assist homeowners understand rainwater management, water run off. Through our new program, RiverLink will provide an on-line resource designed specifically for smaller sites and private individuals.

We are looking for 75 homeowners to help us kick start the program. RiverLink will provide resources designed specifically for smaller sites and private individuals. Along with developing an online guidebook, RiverLink is developing a certification program available for homeowners. We will assist the first 75 residential property owners who sign up, through the process either with training or review, and/or as funds are available, assist homeowners to implement stormwater features at their homes with some help from our over 600 volunteers.

Ultimately we would like WaterRICH to evolve into something similar to the healthy built home certification program. We will be also be working with the Realtors, green builders and associated groups to identify and certify a minimum of 75 homes in the first year of the program and help spread the word about this new program.

Would you like to be one of the first in your neighborhood to be WaterRICH certified? Call RiverLink’s Watershed Resources Manager, Nancy Hodges. She is a Registered Landscape Architect who can be reached at 252-8474, ext. 14 or by e-mail at

RiverLink will be kicking off the program with a presentation at our offices at 170 Lyman Street at 11:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 25. Come join us to learn about the WaterRICH program and what it can do for you. Signing up for the program will give you preferred access to specific WaterRICH trainings and an hour of individual consulting for free!

Currently there are (more than) 110,000 residential properties within the 656 square miles Buncombe County and 11,000 residential properties in the 450 square miles of Madison County (US Census Bureau, 2009). We have investigated the resources available to small lot owners and homeowners and determined that most owners and residents do not have an easily accessible comprehensive resource for understanding how to capture stormwater, improve water quality, and follow local regulations; nor do most homeowners have the site analysis and design tools needed to determine useful water quality and infiltration mechanisms. Just imagine the impact throughout the watershed if we empower the homeowner in neighborhoods everywhere to understand and utilize these tools that are readily available to developers and larger projects and improve the water quality.

Please RSVP to Nancy by calling (828) 252-8474, ext. 14 or via e-mail at

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Kathleen O'Nan is a contributing reporter to Carolina Public Press.

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