The Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) has taken the initiative and has said that one main focus in 2017 is to include Low Impact Development (LID) and Green Infrastructure (GI) into new projects.
LID is defined as a storm water management approach designed to mimic nature and manage rainfall where it lands.
The growth of our urban areas and subsequent use of land has drastically altered the natural management of rainfall. Frequent flooding, polluted water bodies and damaged roadside ecosystems are just some of the results stemming from the changes in land use.
LID technologies are easy to integrate and their benefits are often quickly noticed and impactful for extended periods of time.
Common LID projects include bio retention areas, green roofs and permeable or porous paving.
It is commonly thought that green products and technologies are more expensive than traditional products. This is not the necessarily the case with LID and GI.
Not only are there affordable green alternatives available, but the return on investment (ROI) for LID can often be much more attractive than traditional methods.
Green roofs are the most popular GI since they were mandated in the Toronto area since 2010. Green roofs are widely used on condo buildings and industrial/commercial facilities. The roofs help manage rainfall while providing green spaces that can be enjoyed by residents and that enhance the skyscrapers in the city of Toronto.
Bio retention areas such as rain gardens are increasing in popularity for both residential and commercial areas. Not only do rain gardens help manage storm water, they also add welcomed green spaces, vegetation and birds and butterflies to areas that have been traditionally paved or bare. Designing and constructing rain gardens have become wonderful community projects.
The Ecoraster System is a Permeable Paving Option that Achieves Storm Water Management Goals
Permeable paving is being widely used to repurpose many surface parking areas into infiltration areas allowing for a land efficient and cost effective use of space. There are many different types of permeable paving available including porous asphalt and concrete, unit interlocking pavers, and geogrids such as Ecoraster. Permeable pavers vary widely in their porosity, their cost, their installation process, their required maintenance and their ROI.
Ecoraster is an alternative permeable paving system that has been used world-wide for nearly 25 years as an affordable, easy to install, heavy duty parking system. Engineered in Germany and now manufactured in both Germany and Canada, Ecoraster is proven to manage rain fall where it lands, reducing flooding and helping to recharge the aquifers naturally.
Densely populated cities such as Toronto feel the impact of the recently changing weather patterns and increasingly strong rain events. Incorporating permeable paver systems especially into areas that are “land locked” can often have an immediately positive result. The Ecoraster Permeable Paving system is also weather-proof and built to withstand the brunt of Canadian winters.
As mentioned before, permeable pavers vary in regards to many factors. It is imperative that when choosing a permeable paving system, the goals of the project and the specified product are clearly defined.
The porosity of the products varies and can sometimes be further affected if the system is not maintained properly. The cost of the different permeable paving systems varies dramatically and can also be affected by the location and the ease of access to the site. Installation processes of the different pavers is also diverse. Some systems are straight forward and easy to install and can even be considered a DIYer type product. Other systems require specially trained installers and special machinery.
There are maintenance schedules for most of the permeable paving systems which often include vacuuming to ensure the surfaces are kept clear and the storm water can easily enter the base below.
Finally, in choosing a permeable paving system, one very important quality that a system should offer is sustainability and subsequently, an extended life cycle. Products that are considered GI and LID should also address the issue of longevity. Ideally, a truly sustainable product is one that will last for an extended period, maximizing budgets and ensuring that it will not have to be replaced frequently. A product that is manufactured in a low-carbon footprint manner further enhances its sustainability aspect.
Ecoraster is a product, based on the above criteria that will provide a long lasting, fully sustainable permeable paving surface for many different applications. The Ecoraster system is an LID paving option that you can rely upon to achieve your storm water management goals in an affordable and durable manner.
LID Permeable Paving Canada is the exclusive distributor of the Ecoraster system in Toronto and the GTA. We also service LID permeable paving installations throughout Ontario and Canada.