Exploring Solutions for Green Infrastructure on Brownfield Sites

featured in June 2015 Issue of Properties Magazine

By Dan B. Brown and Michael Bitto

For urban communities, the need for stormwater management has resulted in a substantial financial burden. The requirement to considerably reduce combined sewer overflows is at the center of this problem. One possible solution to this problem is the use of Green Infrastructure (GI). In urban communities, where open space is limited, brownfields offer an opportunity in terms of available land, but pose a significant obstacle to implementing GI solutions.

From Left to Right: Conceptual model for bioretention basin, environmental concerns identified during environmental due diligence, and refined rendering of engineering design incorporating environmental findings.

The implementation of GI (e.g., infiltrate, bioretention basins, etc.) allows for a Triple Bottom Line Approach, consisting of three prongs:

  • to be cost-effective (financial),
  • to produce greenspace for the local community (social), and
  • to mitigate stormwater entering combined sewers (environmental).

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