Posted by Norman Fong, November 30th, 2009
photo credit: justinbaeder
We have some broken concrete areas that need to be repaired, so we are investigating replacing them with paver stones. Pavers are versatile because they can be individually replaced or removed and re-leveled should the need arise. The problem with ‘normal’ ones is that water can pool or water requires special water drainage. Water cannot soak into the ground, it runs off into storm drains.
‘Green’ or permeable paver stones eliminate standing water, allow natural drainage, and allow recharging of groundwater. Restore the natural water cycle and reduce your properties footprint. They can also be used to divert water to rain water capture systems.
Specially designed pavers can be installed that are include gaps in the center of or between pavers. These gaps are filled with gravel, grass, or vegetation and allow for water infiltration. Maximum openings of less than 1/2″ are required for ADA regulations so this cannot be done in public areas.
Unfortunately these special green paver stones cost more than normal ones but your water management costs would be lower. Paver stones are usually made of concrete, material that is not the most eco friendly as it takes a lot of energy to make concrete.
A lower-cost option is to leave large gaps between concrete or stone pavers. Alternately use steppingstones or pea gravel. Decomposed granite can also be used.