A self-guided tour of Low Impact Developments in Clark County, WA

FEATURED SITE
- Clark County Public Service Center

OTHER SITES WORTH A VISIT

32 Water Resources Education Center
4600 Columbia Way, Vancouver – Removed turf and replaced it with plantings to provide habitat in learning areas and a new outdoor lab.

Vancouver Water Resources Education Center


34 Vista Court Senior Apartments
, 1405 Esther St., Vancouver – Existing trees were retained, turf was eliminated, and a variety of native plantings and a bioretention facility in the main parking area were installed.

Vista Court senior apartments

 

Native plantings

Landscape beds and trees

Mature native vegetation and soil are necessary to maintain watershed hydrology, stable stream channels, functioning wetlands and healthy aquatic systems. Native plants are some of the most cost-effective, efficient tools for managing stormwater quantity and quality. Numerous studies have suggested that mature forests in the Pacific Northwest provide rain interception rates of up to 40 percent. Adding trees, understory and groundcover materials will reduce the amount of water needing to be managed. The design must be appropriately located for plants to thrive and species must be selected with care. Landscaping is not an after-thought of the design, but rather an integrated approach to stormwater design. .

FEATURED SITE

Clark County Public Service Center 12

1300 Franklin St., Vancouver

Example of: native plantings

In 2009, county staff worked with a local designer to remove 8,700 square feet of turf and install native plantings near the building’s east end. The result is a lush area that provides increased aesthetics as well as wildlife habitat in an urban setting. County staff hosts volunteer work parties each summer to manage weeds and overgrowth and prepare for winter.