Council targets neighborhood flooding using green technologies

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City of Seattle

Councilmember Jean Godden
Councilmember Mike O’Brien

Council targets neighborhood flooding using green technologies

SEATTLE City Council set a target to prevent flooding around Seattle’s drains and pipes by capturing stormwater and reducing rain runoff by implementing emerging green technologies. This "Green Stormwater Infrastructure" (GSI) includes raingardens, vegetated roofs, rainwater harvesting and use of permeable pavement in Seattle neighborhoods.

The City will strive to manage 700 million gallons of stormwater annually with GSI methods by 2025, approximately 1,000 gallons per Seattle resident. Seattle’s sewer and stormwater system can back up during heavy rainfall, and GSI is intended to mimic natural processes by absorbing stormwater flow.

"These green technologies improve water quality, control stormwater, prevent flooding and protect creeks," said Councilmember Jean Godden. "Neighborhood beautification and increased greenery is just one of many bonuses that come with it."

GSI can provide community benefits such as an increased tree canopy, improved pedestrian safety, new small business opportunities, improvements to streetscapes or bikeways that provide appreciable economic and aesthetic value and climate mitigation and adaptation value.

"Seattle has been a national leader in the development and delivery of high-performing GSI projects and programs for more than a decade," said Councilmember Mike O’Brien. "GSI is a critical aspect of a sustainable drainage system."

The Office of Sustainability and Environment (OSE) will coordinate an interdepartmental effort to develop and deliver a "2025 GSI Implementation Strategy" by June 30, 2014.

[View in Council Newsroom]