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Low Impact Development

Low Impact Development -  Create a Hydrologically Functional Lot

LID (low impact development) is an alternative method of land development that seeks to maintain the natural hydrologic character of the site or region. The natural hydrology, or movement of water through a watershed, is shaped over centuries under location-specific conditions to form a balanced and efficient system. When hardened surfaces such as roads, parking lots and rooftops are constructed, the movement of water is altered; in particular, the amount of runoff increases and infiltration decreases. This results in increased peak flow rate and volume, and pollution levels in stormwater runoff. LID designs with nature in mind: working with the natural landscape and hydrology to minimize these changes. LID accomplishes this through source control, retaining more water on the site where it falls, rather than using traditional methods of funneling water via pipes into local waterways. Both improved site design and specific management measures are used in LID designs. LID has been applied to government, residential and commercial development and redevelopment, and has proven to be a cost-efficient and effective method for managing runoff and protecting the environment.