The stormwater system collects runoff from hard surfaces like roads and roofs and moves stormwater away from homes and businesses, helping to prevent flooding. The City’s first stormwater pipes were constructed over 120 years ago and were considered a best practice at the time. As the City developed and paved more areas, the natural water cycle was interrupted and stormwater quality and quantity issues emerged.
When rain falls on hard surfaces like roads and buildings, it can pick up contaminants that end up in waterways and the ocean. Green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) mimics natural systems by absorbing and treating rainwater where it falls. GSI can include rain gardens, green roofs, bioswales, tree soil cells, permeable pavers, cisterns and infiltration chambers. These systems slows the flow of water and cleans it before it returns to the environment and surrounding bodies of water.
To work alongside traditional stormwater pipes and drains, the City is developing GSI to help:
- protect waterways and keep them clean for recreation and wildlife habitat
- reduce flooding and increase infrastructure resiliency to climate change weather events
- use rain as a resource
- reduce infrastructure cost
GSI is typically less expensive to maintain that traditional stormwater pipes
Green stormwater Infrastructure provides other community and ecosystem co-benefits such as increasing biodiversity and habitat, mitigating urban heat and increasing greenspace.
Stormwater Codes of Practice
This is a program to clean stormwater before it leaves a property. Properties will be registered in the program if they:
- have 10 or more parking spaces
- are automotive businesses, recreation facilities, recycling operations or storage yards
- have construction activities on site
The annual rate per registered property is $172.55.