Green Infrastructure

Green Infrastructure, also known as Low Impact Development (LID), is a method of managing stormwater in a manner that is similar to the natural, pre-development hydrology.  As the Capitol Region has grown, more and more hardscape surfaces such as buildings, streets and parking lots, impenetrable by rainwater, have been introduced.  As a result, a large network of pipes and stormwater conveyance systems, retention ponds, and other costly mechanisms became necessary to handle the large amount of rainfall that could no longer absorb directly into the ground.  Green Infrastructure on the other hand, provides the ability to enhance and expand the built environment while also allowing natural stormwater management to occur.  There are a wide range of tools to implement Green Infrastructure in your community.  From design guidelines to sample zoning regulations, an array of resources is available through the Clearinghouse.

Reports / Plans

From Grey to Green


This guide illustrates how an abandoned strip mall, the Manchester Parkade, may be transformed by following the principles of smart growth and green infrastructure.  The plan creates an interconnected network of green spaces to manage stormwater and improve water quality.  Included in the site plan are green buildings, green streets, green plazas, and constructed wetlands.  General information on costs and maintenance is provided.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.



Report_BankingOnGreen_2012_001Banking on Green

This report, jointly issued by American Rivers, the Water Environment Federation, the American Society for Landscape Architects and ECONorthwest in April of 2012, details the cost-effectiveness of green infrastructure and how municipalities can cut energy expenditures, reduce flooding damage and related costs and enjoy public and environmental health protections via these stormwater management strategies.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.


Simsbury Stormwater Design Guidelinessdc_draft_10-13-11_001

This companion document to the Simsbury Stormwater Article and the Simsbury Center Code focuses on LID in Simsbury Center and other compact, walkable areas of town.  Highlights of the document include a recommended design process for including LID principles into future projects, along with a detailed analysis of one of three test sites (Simscroft Farms) to demonstrate the application of the Planning and Site Design Checklist and other design principles. Visit the Town’s website to view all documents related to its Low Impact Development Study.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.


Low Impact Development Guidelines, CTDEEP

Cover for Stormwater Quality Manual-LID Appendix_001The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (CTDEEP) is in the process of evaluating the incorporation of Low Impact Development (LID) principles into Stormwater General Permits.  As a preliminary step, CTDEEP has developed LID Appendices to the Connecticut Stormwater Quality Manual and the Connecticut Guidelines for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control.  Both documents include a step-by-step guide to the planning and design process and design standards and practices.


Download the full printable versions (.pdf) to read more:



CRCOG/EPA Smart Growth Guidelines

toolbox3In 2008, the Capitol Region Council of Governments (CRCOG) collaborated with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to establish guidelines for sustainable design and development specific to the Capitol Region’s unique blend of urban, suburban and rural municipalities.  Included are guidelines for incorporating green building and infrastructure into community design.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.



LA Model Street Design Manual (Streetscape Ecosystem Chapter)

Cover model_street_design_manual_001This comprehensive guide addresses every aspect of a complete street, one that accommodates all modes of transportation as well as one that incorporates elements that create a lively, economically-vibrant and environmentally-sustainable street.  This manual is designed to serve as a guide for municipalities looking to update their own design standards by incorporating elements or adopting entire sections.  Chapter 11 contains a segment on Streetwater Management which includes a discussion on goals, benefits, considerations, and specific treatments.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.


Rainfall as a Resource, CTDEEP

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (CTDEEP) issued an informative brochureresource targeting residents to serve as an introduction to green infrastructure elements applicable to residential properties.  The brochure includes general information on Low Impact Development and practices residents can incorporate into their own homes such as rain barrels, rain gardens, and permeable pavements.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.



9 Ways to Make Green Infrastructure Work, Regional Plan Association

Cover RPA-9-Ways-to-Make-Green-Infrastructure-Work_001This report, issued by the Regional Plan Association (RPA), highlights nine strategies that municipalities across the United States are using to integrate land use and water management goals through Green Infrastructure.  The report describes the specific challenges that were faced and solutions with specific examples that have been employed by cities and towns.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.



Developing A Sustainable Community, CT NEMONEMO_Developing a Sustainable Community_LIDPub_001

Produced by the Connecticut NEMO Program in 2009, this guide is designed to help CT municipalities craft plans and regulations to protect water quality.  Recommended site planning and development practices in the areas of Residential Streets and Parking, Lot Development and the Conservation of Natural Areas are all addressed.  A regulation checklist is included to help communities assess their town’s regulatory compliance with the highlighted practices and identify possible improvements.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.


Connecticut LID Regulations Inventory

CT LID Regulations Search Page_001Visit CT NEMO’s on-line LID Regulations Inventory at to find examples of municipal regulations in Connecticut that include innovative solutions to stormwater management.  Towns are encouraged to keep this database current and provide NEMO with updated regulatory language as it becomes available.



Sustainable Land Use Model Regulations, CRCOGBooklet%204.4.2014_001

CRCOG’s innovative booklet of Sustainable Land Use Model Regulations equips towns with model regulatory language covering ten specific topic areas, including Energy Conservation and Alternative Energy (with a focus on green roofs). The project, funded by a HUD Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant, also included the creation of renderings to help communities visualize the physical impact of implementing the regulations. The visualizations were created for urban, suburban and rural communities at both a bird’s eye and street-level view. Click here to access: specific regulations by topic, the complete compendium of regulations, the accompanying visualizations and a video about the project.



NEMO Network

Cropped National_NEMO_logo_nolines_vert1


The National NEMO (Nonpoint Education for Municipal Officials) Network is a resource for land use decision makers about protecting water quality as communities grow.  This website includes information on green infrastructure tools, resources, and programs.



CT_NEMO_logo[1]Part of UCONN’s Center for Land Use and Research (CLEAR), the CT NEMO Program is focused on protecting the State’s natural resources by promoting better land use planning.  Visit their website to access NEMO’s Rain Garden Smartphone App, the CT LID Inventory, a library of tools and resources and municipal training and workshop offerings.



   EPA Logo

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) has a webpage devoted to Low Impact Development that includes fact sheets and reports, design/guidance manuals, information resources and centers, and videos/other multimedia.

Funding Sources

EPA LogoThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s website includes an extensive listing of potential federal funding sources for green infrastructure. The site also highlights resources (comprehensive guides, case studies and training materials) to help stormwater managers understand the many available funding options as well as links to spreadsheet tools to assess program costs and financing scenarios.

In the News

Green Transportation Infrastructure Special Reportnews1

In May of 2012, CRCOG released a special version of its agency newsletter on the topic of Green Infrastructure.  Highlights included: an overview of Green Infrastructure, transportation-related tools, and a look at the Green Capitols Project completed in Hartford.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to read more.









Implementation Projects

Hole in the Wall Outdoor Stormwater Classroom, East Lyme, CT

hitwoutdoorclassroom (2)The Town of East Lyme has created an outdoor stormwater classroom at the Hole-in-the-Wall parking lot located in downtown Niantic adjacent to the Long Island Sound.  The parking lot has implemented several different green infrastructure technologies and includes signage to inform visitors about the different elements.  The site treats 23 acres of stormwater and includes a real-time stormwater monitoring system that can be accessed through the town’s website.



Jordan Cove Urban Watershed Project, Waterford, CT

Jordan Cove_001The Jordan Cove Urban Watershed Project began in 1995 and was designed to determine water quantity and quality benefits of using pollution prevention Best Management Practices, including green infrastructure elements, in a residential subdivision.  The site was monitored for 10 years.  Technical results, recommendations, and the final report are available on the project website at



Green Roof Implementation Projects in ConnecticutGreen Roofs_009

This Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection photo gallery highlights public and private sector green roof projects that have been implemented in communities across the state, including Haddam, Mansfield (UCONN), Essex, Hamden and Hartford.  A contact list of DEEP Watershed Management personnel is also featured.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to view the slideshow.


Pervious Pavement Installations in Connecticut

Pervious Pavement_016

This photo gallery, compiled by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, showcases a handful of pervious pavement installation options that have been implemented across CT, including: grass gravel grid pavers, permeable block pavers, plastic grid pavers, pervious asphalt, recycled tire pavement and pervious concrete.  Contact information for DEEP Watershed Management staff is also included.

 Download the full printable version (.pdf) to view the slideshow.


Rain Gardens and Bioretention Area InstallationsRain Gardens_026 in Connecticut

This collection of photos, compiled by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, features examples of rain gardens, rain barrels, tree box filters and bioretention area installations across the state.  Residential, municipal and commercial applications are included.

Download the full printable version (.pdf) to view the slideshow.


Rainwater Harvesting Tools and Systems in Connecticut

Rainwater Harvesting_009                          

These photos, collected by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, highlight rainwater harvesting tools (e.g. rain gardens and barrels) and systems.  Yale University’s rainwater harvesting system, located at Kroon Hall, is featured.

 Download the full printable version (.pdf) to view the slideshow.


National Low Impact Development (LID) Atlas

This database includes information on green infrastructure projects that have been constructed across the country.  Search by the type of technology implemented, location, and/or land use type.