The local nonprofit 3 Rivers Wet Weather is developing an online tool to help property owners decide where to place green infrastructure.
The online database will help anyone from residential property owners to municipal planners decide where their green infrastructure project would be most effective in reducing sewer overflow.
3 Rivers Wet Weather Executive Director John Schombert says one of the website’s tools will give private property owners a cost-benefit analysis for each site they’re considering.
“The value of the system also is that we will connect people to the marketplace so they can find the plants and the contractors and the designers, perhaps for more elaborate rain-gardens, that will help them develop their site,” says Schombert.
Schombert says the website will also include a more technical application to be used by municipal engineers for public green projects.
He says the region is very prone to sewer overflow, with overflow events happening about 75 times each year. Schombert says in some parts of the region, just one-tenth of an inch of rainfall can cause overflow.
“[For] half our recreational season, we show impacts in the rivers from wet weather overflows that affect recreation, and even potentially can affect water supplies.”
Schombert says the website will also serve as an overall document of the location and effectiveness of green infrastructure in the region. The online database is slated for completion by March of 2012.