Pervious Concrete is one type of structural (engineered) treatment control for storm water protection. Typical concrete, and all impervious surfaces, facilitate runoff from storm events, which carries with it many dissolved materials that are harmful to our river and drinking water. Pervious concrete is one way to satisfy Reno’s Ordinance (2009) for on-site storm water treatment as it allows water to pass through its pores and into the ground.
All new developments in the Reno area are now required to treat a percentage of storm water on-site. Pervious concrete provides softscape benefits including: infiltration and water quality treatment of storm water, with slow percolation back into adjacent waterways; prevention of snow melt forming ice puddles; and reduction of the heat island effect.
Considerations in the planning of a pervious concrete parking lot are important to determine if this is right for your site, including: upslope sources of fine materials, dirt, or leaves (which may pose a clogging hazard), native soil percolation rate, speed and type of driving on site.
As an infiltrative and storm water treatment tool, pervious concrete has not been widely used in the Truckee Meadows. The City of Reno’s new McKinley Arts Building parking lot demonstrates the material's viability in our extreme climate.
To learn more about pervious options, please browse the Truckee Meadows Structural Controls Design Manual and Truckee Meadows Low Impact Development (planning) Manual online, or purchase your copy from Community Development or Public Works at City Hall: 1 East First St, Reno.