What Is Stormwater?

When it rains or as snow melts the water needs to go somewhere. Some water soaks into the ground, some evaporates, and the rest flows over land into creeks, ponds, wetlands, and eventually into rivers and lakes. In urban areas, rain can not soak into the ground because it can not pass through concrete, asphalt, building rooftops, and other impervious materials. As water runs over these surfaces it picks up and carries pollutants such as oil, gas, lawn fertilizers, and trash, downstream to our rivers and lakes. In rural areas, chemical fertilizers and manure can be carried by rain water into drainage ditches that eventually make it to our lakes.


2016 Waterway Cleanups

Join us rain or shine for Fitchburg’s 2016 Spring Waterway Cleanups planned for: 

  • TBD  Meet at Target Fitchburg near Fitchrona Road. Join Target staff volunteers to clean up various streets and waterways throughout Orchard Pointe (Fitchrona Rd., Nesbitt Rd., Limestone Ln. and adjacent public stormwater facilities).

 Fitchburg Stormwater Utility

The Fitchburg Stormwater Utility was created to finance methods used to control pollutants and suspended solids (dirt). Using detention ponds, drainage swales, rain gardens, and street sweeping, the city can improve water quality and reduce the quantity of stormwater before it is discharged into lakes and streams.


Erosion is the act in which earth is worn away, often by water, wind, or ice, and moved from one place to another. While erosion is a natural process, human activity has increased the rate of erosion by 10-40 times! Fitchburg requires erosion control best management practices on construction sites to minimize the amount of sediment that gets carried off by rain fall.

The utility is funded by charging landowners a fee based on the amount of impervious area on a property. Fitchburg offers ways to reduce your stormwater bill through credits for reducing stormwater run off from your property.

My Fair LakesWe also offer educational and outreach services to let the public know what they can do to help keep our waterways clean. Fitchburg's stormwater discharge permit is part of the Madison Area Municipal Storm Water Partnership (MAMSWaP).


Schumann Greenway Restoration and McKee Farms NW Pond Enlargement

This project consists of regarding approximately 1,200 feet of the Schumann Greenway storm water swale from Richardson Street east into McKee Farms Park.  The McKee Farms NW Pond will include removal of accumulated sediment and expansion to deepen the pond to the south to take full advantage of the available space.  The contract have been awarded to Badgerland Excavating with an anticipated start date of June 7.  If you have any questions about this project, please contact Holly Powell at or 608-270-4263.

  Nine Springs Master Plan
Fitchburg has been awarded a grant for the Nine Springs Watershed by the Department of Natural Resources for 2012 and 2013. The grant money will involve public information meetings, creating a Dunns Marsh management plan, and proposing financial recommendations for the city, among other tasks.
 Valley View Pond
Fitchburg has been awarded an Urban Non-Point Source & Stormwater Planning Grant from the DNR. The grant money will be used to build a stormwater detention facility at the corner of Post and Index Road as a part of the road extension project in 2012.


Red Arrow Pond
Fitchburg has been awarded an Urban Non-Point Source & Stormwater Planning Grant from the DNR. The grant money will be used to build a stormwater detention facility at the corner of Red Arrow and Crescent Road.
Plans, Studies & Reports
There have been extensive studies on the Nine Springs Creek in addition to city-wide plans.
If you are interested in viewing these please contact the Public Works Department (
Additional Information
The following links contain information on how individuals can help improve water quality by constructing rain gardens, reducing fertilizer and pesticide use, and cleaning up pet waste.