Cultec Infiltrative Chambers Help Recharge Groundwater at Polar Beverages' New Warehouse

BROOKFIELD, CT- Polar Beverages, the country's largest independent soft-drink bottler that mainly distributes its products in New England and upstate New York, has a manufacturing facility in Auburn, Mass., as well as several warehouses in the area. As the company faced the need for increased storage space, Polar leased a large warehouse in Auburn with an eye toward not only expanding its storage capacity but also consolidating most of its warehouses in this new location.

The engineers at Land Planning, Inc. designed a 112,500-square-foot addition to the existing 168,550-square-foot building, increasing the amount of impervious surfaces onsite. They also had to design a stormwater system that would infiltrate clean rooftop runoff back into the ground, recharging the groundwater. The amount of post-development runoff recharged back into the ground needed to be equal to or greater than the pre-development amount, as required by the local regulations.

While the engineers had enough space for capturing stormwater runoff from the parking lot and other ground-level surfaces in an above-ground detention system, the site had no area for an infiltration system. Land Planning specialists decided to use an underground infiltration chamber system provided by CULTEC, a company whose systems they had specified in the past.

"We needed a chamber that would have enough capacity to handle the runoff from a large rooftop area," said Norman G. Hill, project engineer and president of Land Planning, Inc. "We could not use perforated pipes in this case because the pipes that could fit in the available space did not have enough storage capacity."

For the project, the engineers selected CULTEC's Recharger® V8(TM), the company's largest capacity plastic chamber able to hold a minimum of about 100 cubic feet of water when installed according to CULTEC's instructions. It is 32 inches high and 60 inches wide, with a bare chamber capacity of 8.68 cubic feet per linear foot. Located under the parking lot, the system captures rooftop runoff and slowly infiltrates it into the ground, replenishing the surrounding soil and aquifer.

The stormwater runoff from the parking lot follows to a Stormceptor® unit for filtration and then the excess stormwater is sent into an extended detention wetland located beyond the parking lot. CULTEC's system occupies 9,000 square feet of the 19.2-acre warehouse site, offering approximately 21,946 cubic feet of storage capacity. The installation began with excavating a bed, laying filter fabric along the sides and the bottom and adding a layer of crushed stone. After the V8 chambers were in place they were backfilled with stone, covered with a layer of fabric designed to reinforce the system to better bear traffic loads, and prepared for asphalt.

"The installation process took less than one week, which was very reasonable for such a large system," said Jeffrey Murray with Patriot Environmental Corp., the project contractor. "I was happy with the ease of installation as well as with the fact that CULTEC's representative provided all the necessary site-specific sketches and field assistance during the installation."

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In 1986, CULTEC introduced its Contactor® and Recharger® HDPE septic and stormwater chambers and helped begin a revolution toward the use of plastic construction products. Since then, several product developments and strategic alliances have made CULTEC a cutting-edge R&D-based manufacturer. CULTEC chambers can be used as subsurface retention or detention systems and as replacements for ponds, concrete structures or pipe and stone installations.

CULTEC manufactures nine different chamber sizes ranging from 8.5" - 32" to accommodate almost any site parameter. The chambers' perforated sidewalls and fully open bottoms promote maximum infiltration capability and allow for the transfer of high volumes of water at a low velocity. The units can be installed singularly or in series in single- or multi-layer beds.

In addition, CULTEC developed its own in-line side portal manifold system, which eliminates the need for a conventional pipe header system, and water quality unit for maintaining CULTEC chamber systems. CULTEC products meet H-25 wheel load requirements, have a 10-year warranty and are currently modeled in HydroCAD, Bentley Systems, Inc.'s PondPack®, Autodesk, Inc.'s Storm and Sanitary Analysis, and Streamline Technologies' ICPR.

CULTEC's technical staff offers free design assistance including preliminary calculations and job-specific CAD details. A free CULTEC StormGenie(TM) -- AutoCAD® Plug-In for designing CULTEC systems and a free HydroCAD CULTEC custom edition is also available from the company. In addition, CULTEC products can contribute to the U.S. Green Building Council's credits, under the LEED rating system, when the project is designed per LEED requirements.


Yuliya Kutuzava
Catalyst Marketing Communications, Inc.
(203) 348-7541

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