About Our Storm Sewer System

The University of Colorado Denver | CU Anschutz Medical Campus Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) connects to the City of Aurora MS4 which discharges to Toll Gate Creek where it ultimately leads to the South Platte River and Barr Lake/Milton Reservoir. The Barr-Milton Watershed includes Denver, Englewood, Littleton, Aurora, Thornton, Lochbuie, Brighton and many other municipalities. See the Milton-Barr Watershed Map below to see what this watershed encompasses.

About Our Watershed

Owned by the Farmer’s Reservoir and Irrigation Company (FRICO), Barr Lake and Milton Reservoir were constructed around 1909. Until 2002, the reservoirs’ main purpose was to supply water for irrigating agricultural crops. In 2002, both reservoirs began to be used to supply drinking water. Historically, both Barr Lake and Milton Reservoir have been some of Colorado’s most nutrient-rich reservoirs and have been hyper-eutrophic due to hi nutrient and organic loads from the South Platte River. Because of this, Barr Lake and Milton Reservoir have a pH and dissolved oxygen total maximum daily load (TMDL) which is controlled by targeting phosphorus. The TMDL seeks a 20% reduction in phosphorus loads on these waters. For more information about the Barr Milton Watershed, see the Barr Milton Watershed Association at: https://barr-milton.org/

    How You Can Help

    By practicing healthy pollution prevention habits, our community can keep pollutants like dirt and common garbage that collect on paved areas from being washed into storm drains. You can help to prevent stormwater pollution by:

    1. Understand Stormwater Basics - Understanding the fundamentals of stormwater including what stormwater is and why the prevention of stormwater pollution is important. See the Stormwater Pollution Prevention page to learn stormwater basics.
    2. Know Your Watershed - Know where the water from your home flows to and what if any impairments those waters have. Having awareness of water quality issues in our area can help us all determine what actions we can take to aid in the prevention of stormwater pollution.
    3. Practice Stormwater Pollution Prevention - See the Stormwater at Home page and learn how you can implement stormwater pollution prevention techniques at your home. By keeping a few simple things in mind, you can help protect our waters. If you are a University of Colorado Denver | CU Anschutz Medical Campus staff, faculty or student, see the Stormwater at CU Anschutz page to learn what we do to prevent stormwater pollution prevention and how you can help when on campus.
    4. Report Illicit Discharges - If you observe pollution concerns that you believe need attention, you may call Facilities Management Customer Service Center at 303-724-1777 or report an illicit discharge if you see illegal dumping.

    Our Stormwater Program

    To minimize pollutants transported by stormwater runoff, the University of Colorado Denver | CU Anschutz Medical Campus implements programs in accordance with the Non-Standard Colorado Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit. The university is required to administer a Non-Standard Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permit, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) Permit #COR-070075. The University of Colorado Denver | CU Anschutz Medical Campus has a stormwater program which includes routine inspections on water quality facilities, targeting of excess nutrients, and education and outreach components. For more information on Colorado MS4 permits, see the MS4 General Permits section of the CDPHE website.

    Key Program Elements

    Public Review & Input

    Public involvement is a critical part of the success of our stormwater program. University of Colorado Denver | CU Anschutz Medical Campus seeks public involvement in the following ways:

    Stormwater Pollution Prevention Program

    To request a copy of our Program Description Document (PDD), which outlines the university's Stormwater Pollution Prevention Program, please contact the Regulatory Compliance Manager. If you have any questions, concerns or ideas about our stormwater pollution prevention program, please also feel free to contact the Regulatory Compliance Manager.

    Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination

    In accordance with state regulations, the University of Colorado Denver | CU Anschutz Medical Campus runs an Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination program which seeks to identity and eliminate any potential illicit discharges throughout the campus. For more information on illicit discharges or to report an illicit discharge, please see the Discharge Detection page.

    Targeted Pollutants (TMDLs)

    The University of Colorado Denver | CU Anschutz Medical Campus discharges to Barr Lake and Milton Reservoir which have a pH and dissolved oxygen total maximum daily load (TMDL). This nutrient loading is controlled by targeting phosphorus with the TMDL seeking a 20% reduction in phosphorus loads on these waters. For more information on TMDLs and what we do to reduce phosphorous loading on campus, see Pollution Prevention.