Greenseams: Innovative Program in Wisconsin Connects Wastewater Utilities and Nature
A Model for Green Infrastructure
“Aging infrastructure is on life support in many U.S. cities, unable to handle large storm events that drop millions of gallons of water, leading to dangerous flooding, sewer overflows, basement backups and public health and safety concerns. At the same time, suburban sprawl continues to consume more and more green space, which in turn creates more impermeable surfaces that do not absorb rainwater and snow melt,” writes Jessica Hrobar in an aricle about the Greenseams program in Wisconsin.
The Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District (MMSD) has created a model for green infrastructure. Known as Greenseams, the program is preserving land that contains hydric soil and water-absorbing vegetation.
By storing and draining water into the ground naturally, Greenseams helps prevent future flooding while supporting and protecting MMSD's structural flood management projects – infrastructure investments worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
All land acquired will remain undeveloped, protecting water and providing the ability to store rain and melting snow. Wetlands maintenance and restoration at these sites will provide further water storage.
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Posted November 2010