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You are here: HOME > Cost-Effective Low Impact Development Project
Cost-Effective Low Impact Development Project
Introduction to Low Impact Development, Green Infrastructure,
and the Technical Assistance Program
CMRPC is pleased to announce a request for applications for a local technical assistance program to be awarded to five communities in the Blackstone watershed. This program will assist communities with implementation of low impact development (LID) techniques to improve water quality and stormwater management. This free technical assistance, estimated at a value of up to $7,000 per community, will include two GIS maps providing information such as existing natural green infrastructure, impervious surfaces, water resources, local and regional priority protection and development areas, open space, and zoning. Additionally, communities will receive technical assistance on a topic of their choice, including review of local land use regulations, priority protection/development areas, stormwater financing options, or a facilitated community workshop.
This program is funded by an agreement (CE96184201) awarded by the Environmental Protection Agency to the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission on behalf of the Narragansett Bay Estuary Program. This funding allows the opportunity to provide technical assistance to five communities within the Blackstone watershed of the Central Massachusetts Regional Planning Commission’s (CMRPC) service area. This project will enhance municipal capacity in the adoption of innovative techniques for land use to:
• better protect water resources;
• reduce stormwater impacts and costs; and
• promote attractive development that is beneficial to both quality of life and the municipal bottom line.
CMRPC is working in partnership with Mass Audubon, the Horsley Witten Group, and the Blackstone River Coalition to directly assist five communities in the Blackstone watershed with nutrient-impaired waters to implement low impact development (LID) land use and stormwater regulations.
What is this Technical Assistance Program About?
This program is designed to provide free technical assistance to communities in the Central Massachusetts Regional Planning Commission (CMRPC) service area located within the Blackstone watershed to support growth and economic development in ways that protect local and regional waterways from harmful pollutants and nutrients from stormwater runoff, reduce flood risks, and minimize local infrastructure and regulatory compliance costs.
Bylaw/Regulations Updates and Mapping
This technical assistance program is being offered to assist communities in planning strategically to incorporate best management practices related to stormwater into their local bylaws or regulations. We will provide Geographic Information Systems (GIS) mapping of natural green infrastructure that already exists in the community in order to understand its benefits in relation to water resources and impervious surfaces. Maps will also display the protection of that natural green infrastructure it in the bigger picture of priority protection and development areas, protected open space, and local zoning.
Communities may choose a technical assistance option that fits best with local interests and issues. Options include open space protection within development, low impact development, green infrastructure, or understanding stormwater management financing. The program can tie in with what you are currently doing, and be tailored to meet your community’s needs.
What is Low Impact Development?
Green infrastructure incorporates natural features such as floodplains, forests, wetlands, and buffer areas. Green infrastructure also refers to a designed landscape that puts natural systems to work like soil and vegetation and mimics those natural processes.
Low Impact Development (LID) is a category of green infrastructure that works with nature to manage stormwater and decrease the impact of development on surface and groundwater. The EPA defines LID as “an approach to land development (or re-development) that works with nature to manage stormwater as close to its source as possible. LID employs principles such as preserving and recreating natural landscape features, minimizing effective imperviousness to create functional and appealing site drainage that treat stormwater as a resource rather than a waste product.”
Green infrastructure and LID techniques include:
- Land use planning and regulation to reduce sprawl and conserve and develop in appropriate areas;
- Incorporation of best management practices (BMPs) in stormwater management;
- Development and redevelopment projects to reduce impervious and increase infiltration;
- Infrastructure improvements such as green street design and stormwater curb bump outs; or
- Tree planting, rain gardens, green roofs, bioswales, rain barrels, constructed wetlands, etc.
Please see the attachments for a more detailed introduction to the Technical Assistance Program and the actual Technical Assistance Offer Application.
The project staff are available to discuss your application with you. For further information on this program, general questions, and final submittal of your application, please contact Eric R. Smith, AICP, Principal Planner, CMRPC, firstname.lastname@example.org, (508) 459-3322.
For assistance in completing this application, please contact Stefanie Covino, Project Coordinator, Shaping the Future of Your Community, Mass Audubon, email@example.com, (508) 640-5618.
A timetable related to this technical assistance program is as follows:
• Submittal of proposals by email are due by September 24th
• Submittal of proposals by mail (six copies) must be postmarked by September 26th
• Finalists will be chosen by October 13th
• Final selection of funded proposals will be announced by October 26th
• Projects will be completed by May 1st, 2016
More information on the Cost Effective Green Infrastructure in the Blackstone River Watershed Project is available at: www.massaudubon.org/LIDcost
This project was funded by an agreement (CE96184201) awarded by the Environmental Protection Agency to the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission on behalf of the Narragansett Bay Estuary Program.