- The individual benefits of specific tools (e.g.,
clustering, native landscaping, bio-swales, etc.)
cannot be separated from the overall benefits of a
complete site design by combining these techniques
together. Ten case studies show an impressive 36%
savings where holistic conservation design treatments
were used over conventional practices.
- Maintenance cost savings range between $3,950 and
$4,583 per acre per year over ten years for native
landscaping approaches over turf grass approaches.
- At the site level, significant cost savings can
be achieved from clustering, including costs for clearing
and grading, stormwater and transportation infrastructure,
- Swale conveyance is cheaper than pipe systems, by
some claims as much as 80%.
Conservation Development Savings (2005):
- Natural landscaping $4,400-$8,850 cheaper per acre
- Long-term maintenance cost savings over $4,000 per year
- Pervious pavement can reduce total costs by up to 30%
- Swale conveyance up to 80% less expansive than pipe/curb and gutter
- Conservation streets $329 less per foot
Low Impact Design Savings from 17 Case Studies
- Capital costs decreased in 16 out of the 17, from 15 to 80%
- In all cases, LID provided other not-monetized benefits including:
- improved aesthetics
- expanded recreational opportunities
- increased property values due to proximity to open space
- increased total number of units developed
- increased marketing potential, and faster sales
- reduced runoff volumes and downstream pollutant loadings
- reduced incidences of combined sewer overflows
- Changing Cost Perceptions: An Analysis of Conservation Development. 2005.
Prepared for the Northeastern Illinois Planning Commission by the Conservation Research Institute.
- Reducing Stormwater Costs through Low Impact Development (LID) Strategies and Practices,
EPA publication number 841-F-07-006, December 2007.
- Site Plan Review: Procedures for Environmental Analysis. Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions. Mendham, NJ 07945.
(http://www.anjec.org/pdfs/SitePlanReview.pdf - 219 KB)
- EPA Watershed Academy. Growth and Water Resources. (http://water.epa.gov/learn/training/wacademy/archives.cfm)
Other Useful Resources:
- North Shore Land Use Issues: The Real Costs of Growth (227 KB pdf, 5p.).
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.
- Connections Between Smart Growth Development and Jobs, Wealth, and Quality of Life in Communities (3.2 MB pdf, 50p.). 2006. International Economic Development Council. This new report from the International
Economic Development Council (IEDC) highlights the connections between smart growth and economic outcomes
such as job growth, occupancy rates, tax base, and private investment. The report uses detailed case studies
to illustrate economic outcomes in places that have incorporated smart growth development strategies.
The case studies profile diverse projects in Lakewood, Colorado; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania;
Paducah, Kentucky; Indianapolis, Indiana; Portland, Oregon; Burlington, Iowa; Silver Spring, MD;
and Columbus, Ohio.
- Protecting Your Community's Natural Resources: A Land
Protection Toolbox for Local Government. 1998. Green
Corridor Project and the State of Minnesota. Jean Coleman,
CR Planning, Inc.
- Revealing the Economic Value of Protecting the Great Lakes (720 KB pdf, 252p.). 2001.
Developed by the Northeast-Midwest Institute and NOAA. This document evaluates various methods that
local land use decisionmakers can use to evaluate the economic benefits provided by the natural environment.
- From Policy to Reality: Model Ordinances for Sustainable Development. 2000.
Minnesota Planning. and Tools and Techniques for Local Planning. 2002. Minnesota
- Creating Green Corridors in Chisago and Washington Counties.
1999. Green Corridor Project. 1000 Friends of Minnesota. (http://www.1000fom.org)
- Linking Local Ordinances to Water Quality. 2004.
Northland NEMO (http://northlandnemo.org)
- A Quick Guide to Using Natural Resource Information (434 KB pdf, 16p.). 2004. MN Dept of Natural Resources, St. Paul, MN 55155-4031.
- Natural Resource-Based Planning for Watersheds - A Practical Starter Kit for Watershed Projects.
2001. University of Connecticut NEMO Program. (http://nemo.uconn.edu)
- Community Culture and the Environment - a Guide to Understanding a Sense of Place.
2002. U.S. EPA (EPA 842-B-01-003). Office of Water. Washington, DC.
More information (30 KB pdf, 2p.) | Entire document (10.5 MB pdf, 293p.)
- Community Planning Resource. University of Wisconsin.
The Community Planning Resources Web site contains information, guidelines and tools
for people with varying levels of expertise in planning, from the concerned citizen to
the trained professional.