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Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority

Skip Navigation LinksLake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority > Green Lane and East Holland River Parking Lot Retrofit

New parking lot with a new bioretention swale and native plants planted in front

Green Lane & East Holland River Parking Lot LID Retrofit

Icon with a P and a downwards arrow Reducing PhosphorusGraphic icon with earth and thermometre showing Action on Climate ChangeGraphic Icon home on water Mitigating Flooding and Controling Stormwater

In partnership with the Town of East Gwillimbury, we completed a low impact development parking lot retrofit at the Green Lane parking lot of Rogers Reservoir. 

What was the problem?

​The previous parking lot was made of an impervious, hard-packed gravel layer. This made it difficult for water to soak into the ground. During major storm event​s, the runoff from the large surrounding areas would flow across the parking lots, picking up pollutants along the way. Because the impervious parking lot didn't allow the water to infiltrate, the gravel and other pollutants flowed directly into the river. 

Stormwater runoff picks up pollutants as it travels across paved or impervious surfaces in urban areas. When it reaches rivers and streams, it degrades the quality of the water, making it difficult for sensitive species to survive. 

The goal of the project was to resurface the parking lot with asphalt and direct runoff from the hard surface into a large bioretention swale. This swale, planted with native species, will filter up to 454 cubic metres of stormwater (4,540 bathtubs or 454,000 water bottles!). 

Bonus - The parking lots can now stay open year round!​ bioretention swale under construction. There is a big ditch filled with pervious stones

What is a bioretention swale? 

A bioretention swale is a low impact development technique that provides storage, treatment, infiltration and routing of surface water runoff in a landscaped area. It mimics natural processes by absorbing water and filtering pollutants, directing water back into the ground or overland to appropriate outlets.