Porous Parking Lot, Trails, and Walkways
Porous Paving Material
Porous paving systems are ones that allow water to infiltrate through the pavement and avoid run-off, gullies, and wasted water.
Porous Trails and Walkways
Trails and walkways can be developed utilizing bricks, flagstones, interlocking pavers, stone and bark chips, as well as new varieties of porous asphalt and concrete. These porous surfaces encourage infiltration of runoff. Walkways and paths are designed with curves and porous spaces between steppers.
Permeable Pavements lead to better Water Quality When rain falls on undeveloped land like fields and forests, it percolates into the soil gradually, recharging the streams and aquifer. Hard surfaces like roads and pavement are impermeable, therefore, rain cannot soak through these layers into the ground. Instead, water flows directly into water bodies increasing the risk of flooding, erosion, and pollution by quickly adding water to these systems while reducing the amount of water percolating into the ground to recharge the aquifer. Storm water runoff from impermeable surfaces reduces water quality by increasing the amount of pollutants and sediments entering the water system. Pollutants such as oil, trash, chemicals, and other sediments are conveyed by the runoff into our streams and water bodies. The increased velocity of storm water runoff from impermeable areas will also increase erosion along stream banks, which will add sediment to the water ways. All of these factors decrease the quality of our streams and lakes, and we cannot live without water. Permeable pavement is a paved surface that is porous and therefore allows storm water to percolate into the ground instead of going directly into our streams.
The parking lot at the Miller Ecological Park was constructed of permeable pavers, therefore, allowing percolation into the ground. When it rains, the water filters down through the pavers and into a gravel sub base layer. Once it enters the gravel layer, it slowly flows through the gravel into the adjacent rain garden. As it moves through the permeable pavers and gravel sub base, pollutants such as oil and sediments are filtered out. By slowing down and reducing the amount of storm water runoff entering streams, we are reducing the likelihood of flooding and erosion while helping the recharge of the groundwater.