Wednesday, January 16, 2008

green alleys

Here's a positive change we'll see more of this year: green alleys Many of us have runoff from alleys into our yards, sometimes contributing to basement flooding. Additional alley runoff can create street flooding - water that sometimes ends up overwhelming the drainage system, resulting in large stormwater discharges that often result in beach closures later.

What if the city, or you in your own back yard, changed the pavement to a permeable variety so that much of the water was absorbed into the ground, filtered as nature intended, rather than creating flooding? Having large areas of concrete in your yard can add to flooding. If you replaced your asphalt or concrete driveway with this, you could create additional green space, reduce runoff, and reduce the amount of radiated heat. The comments below the photos are worth reading.

At many houses on city lots, replacing a side driveway and patio with permeable pavement could double the amount of green space and significantly reduce heat in the area around that house. I've seen one house in Beverly where they tore out the driveway and replaced it with a beautiful garden. The car sits on the street, and the garage is used for storage.

Food for thought....

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