Eco express


length: 6:02

Porous Pavement


Keywords: porous , runoff , porous pavement , impermeable , transpire , atmosphere , hydrologic cycle , percolate , pollutant , purified , mimic nature , stormwater , rain water , storm water , weather , watersheds , pollution , water , rivers , streams , climate connections ,

Before roads and parking lots, the majority of rainwater hit the landscape and soaked into the ground. Rain water was taken up by trees and plants and was slowly returned to the hydrologic cycle through infiltration, evapotransipiration, or becoming part of the surface water flow. Paved surfaces changed all of that! Now polluted runoff flushes off parking lots and directly into our rivers and streams.

Porous pavement (sometimes also called porous asphalt or pervious pavement) consists of a permeable surface over top of a uniformly-graded stone bed. It allows stormwater (another term for rain water) to drain through the surface, be temporarily held within the stone bed, and then slowly drain into the underlying soil mantle.

As you can see in the video, Morris Arboretum successfully changed over their parking lot to porous pavement. This pavement mimics the natural system that once occurred on the site.

Climate Connections: Porous pavements are a green infrastructure tool being employed by cities to prepare for and adapt to climate change. Check out the Climate Connections in Teacher Resources!

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