Biggest Little City

What is Low Impact Development?


Low Impact Development (LID) is a term for landscape features like rain gardens, swales, planted "low spots", and protective buffer zones around lawns.  We have found that well-placed landscape is perfect for preventing storm runoff from reaching the river without treatment!  This softscape provides infiltration and storage, for runoff, putting it back into the ground to seep into the river -treated. This cleans the water of dissolved materials like pesticides, bacteria from pet waste, and other dirty contaminants, keeping them out of 
our storm drain system and river.

There are also structural controls, or engineered fixes, to treat storm water on site also, (e.g. pervious concrete or "tree box filters"). The Truckee Meadows Watershed Committee created both an LID Design Manual, and a Structural Controls Guidance Manual. Please view them online or pick one up at the Public Works Department, 7th floor of City Hall at
1 East First Street, Reno. 

While the City of Reno passed a Structural Controls/LID Ordinance in 2009, it requires new developments to include LID features or other storm water treatment on site where feasible. Recognizing that some site conditions are simply not appropriate for LID, the TMWC has provided Standard Design Guidance Worksheets for selecting and sizing these features to the best extent appropriate.   For more info on considerations, check
out the Local LID guidance links.




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