Urban Practices

 Low Impact Development (LID) is a sustainable land development approach that begins with a site planning process known as “smart planning” that first identifies critical natural resource areas for protection.  Then, once the smart plan is established, techniques, such as maintaining natural drainage, minimizing land clearance, clustering buildings, and reducing impervious surfaces are incorporated into the project design.  A series of storm water best management practices (BMPs) that preserve the natural features and hydrology of the land are used instead of the conventional methods of getting rid of water as quickly as possible by piping it away.  The website Rainscaping Iowa has more details about practices that can be used in Iowa.

For information about smart planning, Low Impact Development, or financial assistance please contact the Dickinson County SWCD at 712-336-3780 ext. 3.

Pervious Paving

Previous Paving is a system that allows storm water to flow infiltrated of off the surface through a system that filters the runoff, cleans it, and slowly releases it to the lake.  The storm water flows through the pavers and then enters a rock chamber.  The rock chamber holds the water temporarily and allows for the water to be cleaned, cooled, and slowed down.

Below is the pervious pavement system installed at Triggs Resort in Arnolds Park.

A pervious pavement system installed at Triggs Resort in Arnolds Park.

Rain Gardens/Bio-retention Cells

Bio-retention areas are shallow storm water basins or landscaped areas that utilize engineered soils and vegetation to capture and treat storm water runoff.  Runoff may be returned to a drainage system, or allowed to partially or fully infiltrate into the soil and groundwater.

Okoboji Rain Garden
Okoboji Rain Garden