Rubber duck floating down gutter with running waterStormwater is a term used to describe water that originates during precipitation events. Stormwater that does not soak into the ground becomes surface runoff which flows into waterways either directly or indirectly through stormwater pipes and outlets. All stormwater ends up untreated in your local waterway.


Storm Water Operations is responsible for maintenance, daily functions and management of Norfolk's stormwater systems.

  • BMP Maintenance: The Division maintains stormwater best management practices (BMPs) such as wet ponds, dry ponds, infiltration trenches, etc. on properties that drain water from City right-of-ways. Maintenance includes cleaning and repairing structures, cutting vegetation, dredging, etc.
  • Ditch Maintenance: The Division maintains non-tidal city-owned roadside and off-road ditches, in the City right-of-way, by ensuring the flow line is clear by removing trash and overgrown vegetation. Ditches may periodically be regraded to ensure proper drainage. Property owners, whose property drains to private ditches, are responsible for their maintenance.
  • Grocery Cart Collection: The Division is responsible for removing abandoned shopping carts throughout the city.
  • Floodwall/Gate Maintenance and Operations: The downtown floodwall is 1644 ft. long with the gates opened and 1801 feet long with the gates closed. The five gates work in conjunction with one of our pump stations to protect Norfolk's downtown area from tidal and precipitation events.
  • Lot Cleaning: Illegal dumping on city-owned property is prevalent in the city. The Division maintains crews to clean illegal dumping on city vacant lots, city right-of-way, dead ends, and underpasses.
  • Storm Water Pump Station Maintenance: The Division maintains 16 pump stations throughout the City to reduce flooding in low lying areas such as underpasses. Daily inspections and routine maintenance is performed on the pump stations. The Department of Public Works continuously performs major maintenance on these systems each year by replacing pumps, rehabilitating the stations, and upgrading electrical systems.
  • Street Sweeping: The City of Norfolk has the most extensive street sweeping program in the region. We currently sweep all streets in the city, with curb and gutters, once per month. Downtown Norfolk is swept on a daily basis. Other cities in the region only sweep their streets once or twice a year, and even then it usually is only major roadways.
  • Structure Repair and Maintenance: The Division performs routine maintenance and cleaning of the stormwater system that is comprised of underground pipes, drop inlets, and catch basins. During structural failure, staff will make necessary repairs.

Street Sweeping

Street Sweeping is responsible for sweeping all streets with curb and gutter.

Environmental Regulatory

Environmental Regulatory is responsible for managing Norfolk's stormwater discharge permit and supporting programs.


Engineering is responsible for water quality and water quantity projects city-wide.

Norfolk Floodwall Extension Project
The City and the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) are working together to safeguard the City in light of increasing coastal storms and sea level rise. Updates to this project will be posted as available.

Education & Outreach

Education and Outreach is responsible for educational campaigns and programs.

Stormwater Fees

Stormwater fees are monthly fees paid for stormwater.

Have a comment you would like to submit about a service request that was performed by a stormwater employee or crew? You can provide feedback through our online Customer Satisfaction Survey.