A few years back in Sultan, a small town on Highway 2 northeast of Seattle, contractors covered 32,000 square feet of driveways, streets and sidewalks with pervious concrete.
The goal was to reduce standing water and improve stormwater management during the wettest months of the year. The project, according to Concrete Network, connected 20 new homes via a 20-foot-wide road and 4-foot sidewalks, in addition to all the driveways adjoining the street.
Thanks to the many benefits of pervious concrete, the project resulted in more than $260,000 in savings for the contractor because it was able to eliminate stormwater catch basins, detention vaults and more.
Is that typical of pervious concrete installations? Can using pervious concrete help save governments and homeowners money?
Read more: Pervious concrete excels in public spaces
A concrete answer (pardon the pun) depends on the specifics of the job, but there are many ways in which pervious concrete can help ease the pressure on a project’s bottom line. Here are a few of them:
Pervious concrete can help mitigate stormwater issues. According to the City of Bellingham, pervious concrete “is one effective way to treat stormwater, as it keeps larger organic matter from downstream stormwater systems while providing an infiltration facility for aquifer recharge.” As such, pervious concrete can help qualify a project for a 50% reduction in stormwater development charges, potentially saving thousands of dollars.
Additionally, the Washington State Department of Ecology considers the use of pervious concrete and other permeable pavements as a best management practice for the treatment of runoff.
Pervious concrete could be the difference between having a driveway and not. Many cities have been telling homeowners that they need to install pervious concrete if they want to have a driveway. Among the reasons for this is that impervious surfaces — roofs, traditional concrete and asphalt, driveways, etc. — create massive amounts of runoff, which puts an often-unbearable load onto local stormwater systems.
Believe it or not, as much as 5 gallons per minute can pass through a square foot of pervious concrete. That’s a rate fast enough to handle 8 inches of rainfall every 60 seconds!
Pervious concrete can help qualify a project for LEED credits. Because it is so effective at boosting stormwater management, pervious concrete also qualifies for various LEED credits related to rainwater and runoff.
For help deciding whether pervious concrete would be helpful on your next project, please give the experts at Custom Concrete Contracting a call. We’ve been installing pervious throughout Whatcom and Skagit counties for years, and we know what it takes to do it right.