Porous Sidewalks - environmentandpoliticsRPI


Porous Sidewalks - environmentandpoliticsRPI
Porous Sidewalks
Background Info.
Hudson River Estuary Provides drinking
water for 100,000 people and recreation for
Nonpoint Source Pollution > Discharge From
Factories (DEC)
In 2013 236 lb of Lead v.s. 182,320 lb of
Metals such as arsenic, lead, cadmium,
mercury, PCB’s, and oil are very malignant
Porous Interlocking Concrete v.s. Porous
The Problem...
● The Problem: The Hudson River is heavily polluted from
years of neglect. There are things such as heavy metals that
have been contaminating the river since the industrial days of
the Hudson Valley.
● Contamination can come from sewage overflow and runoff
releasing harmful pathogens into the water. Pathogens from
overflow causes about 3.5 million people to get sick annually
according to the EPA.
● The Troy sidewalks are bad and need of replacement
providing an opportunity to solve two problems at once.
Red indicates percent of water tests showing quality problems
The Solution...
We believe implementing Porous Concrete can alleviate some of the pollution
issues and help fix the crumbling sidewalks in the city of Troy.
● Porous concrete filters and eliminates 98% of metals, about 85% of nitrogen,
phosphorus and suspended solids, and about 30% of Nitrate.
● Porous concrete allows excess water to flow through it alleviating the amount
of water going into the sewage system causing overflows.
● The concrete also allows for water and oxygen to reach plant roots in the
River St Downtown Troy.
Total Distance: 4,070 ft.
Adjacent to Riverfront Park
Fairly Close to the Hudson River
About 16,280 Sq ft.
Roughly cost about $32,560 v.s.
Longevity: 20 to 30 years
Stakeholders and their Perspectives
-Downtown Businesses and Restaurants, the renovation of the sidewalks encourages
seating outdoors.
-Troy Citizens, the new sidewalks will improve the quality of the streets and Hudson
-City Government, would be responsible for paying and hiring someone for installation
-Concrete Companies, would receive pay for installing the new sidewalks
-Local Media, the media can cover the addition of porous sidewalks to increase
awareness of this material and how it benefits the environment
-Local Schools, can use the addition of the sidewalks to educate the kids about the
There are two main resources required when it comes to building a sidewalk,
money and someone to actually build it. The money will have to come from
tax dollars, we expect total costs to be somewhere around $32,560. As for
companies, there are several places that the city can turn to that will
effectively build a sidewalk using the porous material. Examples of these
companies include:
-Bonded Concrete, located out of Watervliet, NY.
-Cranesville Concrete, located out of Albany, NY.
-Grandview Block and Supply, located out of Schenectady, NY.
What barriers may arise?
Funding for the project.
Bidding for the project
Getting the city planner on board
Department of Environmental
Conservation: 136 million 15
year plan to cut sewage spills
River street is considered a
Historic District
With the current state of the
Hudson this project is a
Zoning restrictions
Work around zoning restrictions
Soil Survey
● Portland, Oregon paved about 1,000 feet of street surface with permeable,
high strength, concrete blocks.
● Test strip in Berlin, Mass. to see how pervious concrete stood up to New
England’s harsh freeze-thaw weather. It was successful.
● City of Olympia has installed sidewalks and also advocates for the use of
the material.
Positive Outcomes that may come from this Project
● Remaining sidewalks in Troy also replaced by
porous concrete
● Noticeable Difference in pollution in River
around Troy such as a 98% reduction in metals
and 85% reduction of suspended solids in water
entering the river
● Other communities around the Hudson also
install porous concrete resulting in
improvements in the entire river
● Increase in foot traffic in the areas with improved

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