Evaluating the effect of city ordinances on the implementation and performance of green stormwater infrastructure (GSI)
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Evaluating the effect of city ordinances on the implementation and performance of green stormwater infrastructure (GSI)

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  • Journal Title:
    Journal of Environmental Challenges
  • Description:
    The replacement of natural pervious surfaces with impervious surfaces due to urbanization, construction, and development causes excess stormwater runoff and results in cities experiencing localized flooding events. The installation of green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) is one way of reducing flooding events and preventing downstream erosion and damage. In this study, computer rainfall-runoff simulations were performed to analyze GSI's effectiveness in mitigating stormwater runoff when applied to sites with different soil types and for which different design storms were established by regulation. A mixed-use development site was used as a hypothetical site on which to perform the analysis. The study applied the same design to six small- to medium-sized cities in the southeastern United States with different design storm magnitudes. The cities’ ordinances were reviewed, and none required GSI. Therefore, this study revised some of the stormwater management requirements to stress GSI implementation, and then stormwater modeling was conducted to see how regulatory changes would affect runoff. The HydroCAD stormwater modeling tool was used to perform hydrologic simulations for the hypothetical building site in each of the six cities using the design storms and small storms of the cities. Even though GSI has been commonly implemented in large cities, small and medium-sized cities can also prevent excess stormwater by incorporating GSI in their ordinances for new developments and site retrofits. Based on the hydrologic simulation results, municipalities with lower magnitude design storms and low infiltration soils have the most to benefit from GSI and could benefit from ordinances requiring GSI. For smaller, more frequent storms, GSI alone can meet the pre-development peak flow requirements.
  • Source:
    Environmental Challenges, 4: 100183
  • Document Type:
  • Rights Information:
    CC BY
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