Friday, October 25, 2013

Low Impact Development Strategies Reduce Costs

Check out this article from the journal, Suburban Sustainability on the costs savings from low impact development (LID) practices for land prep prior to construction. The authors of the article, Daniel Penniman, Mark Hostetler, Tatian Borisova, and Glenn Acomb did a survey of those practitioners who use LID and found that the cost savings compared to traditional development strategies were significant, and in some cases amounted to millions of dollars.

For those unfamiliar with low impact development strategies, they are heavily focused on retaining natural ecosystems and maintaining natural hydrologic flow. Conventional development strategies, particularly in rainy Florida, rely mainly on pipes and ponds to transport stormwater flow off of developed land. LID instead tries to rely on natural systems to allow rainwater to percolate where it falls. The perception among many developers is that it is more expensive to use LID in site preparation. However, the authors found that the exact opposite is true. LID results in significant cost savings.

 The journal, Suburban Sustainability, is an open access journal and you can download the articles for free. I edit the journal, so if any of my readers have any questions about it, please contact me. You can submit articles here. All articles are peer-reviewed and we strive to complete the review and editing process within a month or two.

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