Stormwater Management Program

Stormwater Management Program

The City of Tacoma Stormwater Management Program (SWMP) Plan was updated in 2015 to meet 2013-2018 National Pollutant Discharge Eliminations System (NPDES) Permit requirements.

Stormwater Management Program Plan

Public Meeting to Provide Input on City of Tacoma Design Manual - February 3, 2015

The City of Tacoma will be updating the Public Works Design Manual, Tacoma Municipal Code and standard drawings to encourage Low Impact Development (LID).  The Public Works Design Manual (PWDM) was last updated in 2004.  The City will be updating the PWDM to incorporate LID where appropriate but will also review and update all areas of the PWDM as needed.  Topics of discussion for the PWDM include:

  • Street design
  • Wastewater and stormwater design
  • Streetlighting
  • Traffic signalization
  • Channelization
  • Pavement markings
  • Planning and design elements

The City would like public input to help guide the updates.  Join us at a public meeting for an overview of proposed changes.

Location, Date and Time

Tuesday, February 3, 2015
4:00 to 5:30 PM
Center for Urban Waters
Commencement Bay Conference Room
326 East D Street
Tacoma, WA, 98421


4:00-4:15 PM Introductions
4:15-4:45 PM Overview of Proposed Revisions
4:45-5:30 PM Discussion of document updates and Public Comments

The City encourages all interested parties to attend this public meeting.  Suggested groups include: citizens and citizen groups, engineers, planners, builders and related professionals that live or work within the City of Tacoma.  For additional information, please contact Merita Trohimovich at (253) 502-2103.  Please RSVP to

Public comments may be submitted in writing to until February 18, 2015.


The Goals of the City of Tacoma Stormwater Management Program

  • Manage surface water to minimize flooding, erosion and contamination
  • Mitigate the impacts of increased runoff from urbanization
  • Manage runoff from developed properties and those under development
  • Protect the health, safety and welfare of the public
  • Correct or mitigate existing water quality problems
  • Restore and maintain the chemical, physical and biological integrity of waters in the city for the protection of beneficial uses
  • Develop and put into place a cost-effective, affordable surface water management program
  • Educate the public about what they can do to help keep our waters clean


To give us the needed authority to comply with our NPDES permit, the City passed an ordinance that regulates surface water and wastewater within city limits. This ordinance, known as Chapter 12.08 of the Tacoma Municipal Code, prohibits introducing any matter except clean storm and surface water into storm drains.


Tacoma’s National Pollution Discharge Elimination System Permit

The Stormwater Management Program (SWMP) requirements are listed in the City of Tacoma's National Pollutant Discharge Eliminations System (NPDES) Municipal Stormwater Permit, which regulates the discharge of stormwater from the City's storm system to surface and ground waters. This program guides the storm drainage system operations of the City through the end of this NPDES permit term (2018).


Tacoma’s Stormwater Management Program is designed to meet the requirements set forth by the NPDES permit and contains multiple elements including storm system mapping and maintenance, permitting and inspecting new construction projects, source control inspections, spill response, illicit discharge investigations, and public education.

For more information about the NPDES permit program or our compliance with it, please call Surface Water Management at (253) 591-5588.

NPDES Municipal Stormwater Permit Submittals

The City of Tacoma has a newly issued National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Municipal Stormwater permit, which regulates the discharge of stormwater runoff to the City's separate storm sewer, which drains directly to local waterways.

Documents related to the NPDES permit submittal process to the Department of Ecology are as follows:


March 31, 2013 Submittals

Attachment B - Program Evaluation and Other Activities Narrative
Attachment B1 - (not applicable) Notification of any changes to authorization pursuant to Permit Section G19.C 
Attachment B2 - Summary of actions taken pursuant to Permit Section S4.F
Attachment B3 - City of Tacoma Stormwater Management Program Assessment
Attachment B4 - Update to Structural Stormwater Control Program 2012-2013 Surface Water Capital Improvement Program Summary
Attachment B5 - (not applicable) Summary of Actions taken to comply with applicable TMDL requirements 
Attachment B6 - Brief description of stormwater monitoring studies not part of Tacoma's Annual Stormwater Monitoring Report
Attachment B7 - Operation and Maintenance Records: 2012 City Storm System Maintenance Activity Report
Attachment B8 - (not applicable) Notification of any annexations, incorporations, or jurisdictional boundary changes in Tacoma
Attachment B9 - (not applicable) Summary of Barriers to Implementation of Low Impact Development
Attachment B10 - City of Tacoma Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Maps
Attachment B11 - Map of 2012-13 Illicit Connection Field Screening Completed
Attachment B12 - Regional Road Maintenance ESA Program Quartelry Reports for 2012
Attachment B13 - Examples of Education and Outreach Publications distributed during 2012
Attachment B14 - Summary, Measurement and Assessment of Education and Outreach Programs