City commits to 10% cut in impervious surfaces

The City Council last month passed a resolution to “commit to a goal of 10 percent reduction in impervious surfaces” at municipally-owned facilities by 2015.

The city “will make best efforts to reduce impervious surfaces, including equivalent storm water runoff reductions, to set an example to communities that storm water management is a serious matter,” the resolution stated.

The resolution cites communities in the Rahway River Watershed as suffering in excess of $50 million in damages to households and businesses from Hurricane Irene in 2011. “The overdevelopment of properties and the elimination of pervious surfaces throughout the watershed have compromised the ability of the region to manage its storm water without such major damages as seen during Irene.”

This piece in Atlantic Cities, “The Way We Build Cities Is Making Them Flood,” essentially blames the urban impervious surfaces (parking lots, anywhere that water can’t drain, like asphalt), for flooding in the Chicago area — only not where you’d think.