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Permeable Driveway

A permeable driveway allows water to seep through its surface and the sub-base. The driveway can then be covered with grass or loose gravel to prevent heat from accumulating while adding aesthetic value to your landscape. It is approved globally as a tried-and-true response to stormwater management and environmental issues. 

Permeable driveways are becoming popular in the United States. Up to 95% of surface rainwater can penetrate through the pavement surface thanks to permeable paving, which employs purpose-built segmental paving units and properly graded base materials. This prevents surface stormwater from collecting or flowing into drains. In comparison, other paving materials add to greenhouse gas emissions which result in climate change. Asphalt, concrete, and other paving materials might contribute to water contamination, erosion, and urban heat leading to the heat island effect. But the goal of a permeable driveway is to build a sustainable urban environment.

Choosing permeable paving (i.e., paving that enables water to flow through it instead of racing to the nearest sewer) is an environmentally responsible decision. And when you can be both environmentally conscious and save money, what’s not to like? Therefore, we created this comprehensive guide that explains all permeable driveway options, their pros and cons, and how much they cost.

What is a permeable driveway?

Permeable driveway paving is a fast-draining system that traps and filters precipitation into the soil. A permeable driveway is installed with porous paving material that absorbs water. Other permeable pavements have nonporous block gaps that allow stormwater to drain through the surface. These driveways have many advantages and allow for the prevention of contaminants and chemicals. It also protects against driveway erosion.

Options and benefits of permeable paving

Benefits of permeable paving

Aside from looking like concrete, a permeable driveway has several advantages and saves you money and reduces water pollution. Some of the benefits of a permeable driveway include:

They are made from 100% natural and sustainable materials

Pervious paving driveways are made from natural and sustainable materials; they are eco-friendly and do not cause any harm to the environment or community. 

Materials for permeable driveway paving include natural aggregate, recycled glass or marble, and natural plant-made resins. When you use pervious paving for your driveway, you are supporting the world to build a healthy atmosphere. 

They prevent floods and act as natural filters

Pervious paving helps filter out dirt and pollutants. It also gives your driveway access to air and moisture. Because natural paving absorbs water, it reduces the 

amount of water directed to the draining system and effectively reduces driveway puddles, thereby preventing floods. 

Low-maintenance 

Permeable paving will always stand out cause they require less maintenance to survive. As long as you keep up with the basics, you won’t have to worry about replacing or repairing your driveways anytime soon. 

They effectively reduce water puddles 

Pervious paving prevents standing water. When you drive in, you won’t have to deal with the frustration of clearing any puddles. Pervious paving drains water without damaging your driveway. Also, permeable concrete paving gets rid of black ice worries during winter. Because it absorbs water, permeable driveways release less heat at night and less heat during the day. 

Options for a permeable and sustainable driveway

Permeable driveway options

A porous driveway is made from a variety of porous materials. They are easy to install and do not require a sub-base, usually sand or gravel. They are also easy to maintain, and they are durable. When you choose a more sustainable and protective paving material for your driveway, permeable paving has several options you can choose from. These include : 

Pervious concrete

Pervious concrete is made from a mixture of porous materials. Permeable concrete feels and looks like concrete but is permeable to water. Also, they are made up of a mixture of stones and concrete. A pervious concrete driveway is designed to channel water away from your drainage or sewage and absorb it into the ground. This sustainable urban drainage system makes living in an eco-friendly environment possible. 

Porous asphalt pavement

Permeable asphalt paving has small gaps between the aggregates that allow water to pass through the asphalt and drain into the stone bed. Permeable asphalt driveways contain bitumen containing tar, aggregates, and additives. This paving provides a solid surface strong enough to withstand pressure and traffic. It also offers safety measures by reducing frozen water on asphalt pavement. For local authorities and commercial entities, permeable asphalt driveways offer many economic benefits. 

Grass permeable driveway

With grass pavement, you can create an eco-friendly driveway. It has a better water management system and protects your environment from floods. A grass driveway also acts as a natural filter by trapping pollutants and allowing rainwater to return to local aquifers. A grass permeable driveway looks aesthetically pleasing and possesses numerous advantages, some of which include; 

  • A clean driveway you can drive through or walk on without getting dirt from mud after heavy rain. 
  • An appealing parking space that blends in with your environment.
  • A driveway with high compression strength
  • Grass permeable pathways have proven to be durable, with a solid surface. 
  • Grass permeable driveways don’t require expensive skills to be installed. They are easy, quick, and need less labor. 

If you want to create a sustainable driveway, grass pavers are the right paving material.

Gravel and loose stones

When it comes to driveway paving, we are not just after what’s appealing to the eyes. Gravel and loose stones provide a durable and affordable parking space for your vehicles. Installing gravel and loose stones is effortless, requires low maintenance, and has many styles and sizes. Gravel has a natural crunching sound; you won’t be caught off guard when a guest drives or walks into your driveway. It’s safe to say that gravel comes with a light alarm and security. 

It’s common for driveways of any type to age with time; thus might include cracks and potholes. Extra gravel will save the day when this happens to your gravel and loose stone driveway. It will help if you top your gravel driveway every eighteen months to reduce the risk of driving into a pothole and destroying your engines or part of your car. 

Permeable brick driveway

Permeable brick driveway

Creating a suitable parking area requires a lot of deliberation. However, porous brick has proven to be the best permeable paving material to help you create a sustainable environment during heavy rain. This driveway filters and absorbs water until it reaches the soil below it. A brick driveway can reduce the amount of flood and erosion. 

Landscapers keep searching for the best way to ensure that your driveways are suitable and convenient; they also ensure that your landscape pavement is protective enough to keep you, your family, and your business safe.

Permeable resin driveway

Resin-bound or troweled paving is made from a mixture of UV-stable polyurethane resin aggregates. As water passes through the sand base, it gets filtered by the porous resin. The filtered water finally gets absorbed by the ground. When used to pave driveways, this mixture forms a strong surface with no loose stones. Resin paving helps in flood prevention and provides a stunning aesthetic. 

Plastic grids

If you are thinking about changing your driveway surface, plastic grids present the quality and stability your driveway needs. This paving material represents a sustainable urban drainage system that is rot-resistant and can support heavy traffic or vehicles. Plastic grids driveways are made from high-quality and durable recycled materials, they are easy to install, and plastic grids are environmentally friendly. 

Permeable driveway ideas

  • Turf block pavers

  • Grass pavers: quality and natural anti-flooding grass pavers add beauty to your driveway. These pavers are durable and eco-friendly.

  • Landscaping grid plastic for driveways

  • Permeable pavers: landscaping has become exciting with different designs, patterns, and ideas.

  • Gravel Driveway: gravel driveways have a solid surface. They appeal to the eyes and make a crunching sound.

  • Driveways made with permeable pavers are rapidly becoming common because of their positive impact on the environment.

How much does a permeable driveway cost?

Different permeable paving options are now made available by manufacturers and wholesalers. A pervious concrete costs between $8-$16 per square foot, while a porous asphalt driveway costs about $7-$13 per square foot. Gravel or loose stones pavers cost about $1-$3 per square foot. The cost of both materials and installation has an added advantage, so at the end of the day, it’s all worth the investment. 

Depending on your choice of grid color and the quality you want to purchase, a plastic grid could cost about $11-$17 per square meter. The average cost of installing a permeable resin pavement is $45 per square foot, and the total cost of installing a permeable brick driveway is $10-$30 per square foot. 

Conclusion

Permeable or pervious driveway is a versatile paving material with many interesting benefits. Home or business owners can install any of these permeable pavements on their driveways and enjoy an eco-friendly system. It’s safe to say that if you install a permeable driveway, you support a better tomorrow. 

Driveway

If you’ve never heard the phrase green driveway, you certainly aren’t the only one.

Many homeowners are starting to look to green driveway options to create more eco-friendly spaces around their homes. Considering an eco-friendly driveway choice, such as green pavers, permeable materials, or eco-friendly alternatives, can provide a lot more value than simply being better for the environment.

If you’re trying to determine whether or not a green driveway is the right solution for your home, continue reading to learn why it’s such an intelligent and sustainable investment. 

What Is A Green Driveway?

Green driveways are greener alternatives to paved driveways, such as asphalt or concrete. Most green driveways are either grass surfaces or permeable stabilized gravel, which are also often used in pathways, public walkways, and parking lots.

These permeable solutions are quite different from asphalt and concrete surfaces in that they allow water to pass through, infiltrating the ground below. The water is then able to cool and irrigate the surrounding grass and greenspace.

Not only are green driveways more than strong enough to hold cars, but they also look good enough to fit with the aesthetic of any home.

The Benefits Of An Environmentally Friendly Driveway

Green driveways can help prevent several problems. Let’s take a look at some of the ways they might benefit your home.

A Green Driveway should be flood deterrent

Flood Deterrent 

If you’ve ever had a standard, impermeable driveway made of concrete or asphalt, then you’ve probably had to deal with all of the problems that arise from them, including erosion, washouts, flooding, and overall surrounding damage that can come with inclement weather and everyday use. 

With a sustainable driveway, rainwater and other liquid pass through into the soil or grass beneath, safely dispersing over a period of time instead of creating a flood. Sloped driveways are often prone to flooding, especially in big storms, which is where eco-friendly driveway options truly shine. 

Durability

Eco-friendly driveways often provide durability that standard asphalt or concrete driveways can’t. You won’t have to worry as much about breakage or stains, and they’re often easy to maintain. This makes eco-friendly driveways a great long-term investment. 

Reduced Heat 

By nature, eco-friendly driveway materials, such as permeable stone driveway tiles offer much better heat reduction compared to other types of driveway materials. Just look at the asphalt, which absorbs and emits lots of heat, especially when it’s in a hotter climate. 

When you have an eco-friendly driveway, you’ll likely even be able to walk around barefoot during the summer without hurting your feet!

Versatility

Environmentally-friendly driveways are very versatile. There are so many options to pick from, most of which are relatively easy to install. You can build eco-friendly driveways in many shapes and sizes, as well as on inclines and declines. 

Different Green Options For A Sustainable Driveway

As we said before, there are many options to choose from when it comes to green driveway materials. Let’s take a look at a few of the most common.

A green driveway, permeable and made of natural stones

1. Permeable Pavers

Permeable pavers are starting to come into fashion as a green driveway material choice. They are very eco-friendly, as they are mostly made from recycled plastic, meaning the environmental impact of production is relatively low. They can be made also of other materials, such as paving stones, pervious concrete, and porous asphalt.

2. Crushed Concrete

While crushed concrete certainly isn’t a natural material, there are many homeowners that swear by it for driveway use. The beauty of crushed concrete is that it allows for water runoff, draining nutrients into the surrounding soil to create carbon dioxide. 

It’s also very sustainable in that you can get it from just about any demolition site. You’re essentially using material that would have likely gone to waste otherwise. 

Crushed concrete often includes materials from pavements, sidewalks, and building foundations. You can use it to create a driveway that looks similar to your standard concrete driveway, though with a more permeable characteristic. 

3. Natural Stone Pavers

By using natural stone pavers on your driveway, you can add a bit more natural character. You can often buy natural stone from quarries, which is more sustainable, as it uses less CO2 production.

Depending on how you set your natural stone pavers up, you can often allow water to run between your pavers, soaking into the surrounding soil. Take a look at the different types of natural stone to find one that fits your aesthetic.

An eco-firendly driveway should be made of natural materials, like sandstone bricks

4. Sandstone Bricks

A sandstone brick driveway is a unique way to add character to your property. Sandstone is one of the nicest-looking natural materials. We get sandstone when storms or inclement weather pressurize small bits of sand into granular layers. The end result is a stone substance, which paving experts will often cut into bricks for use in building projects.

The beauty of sandstone bricks is that they are porous yet durable. You can easily customize them to fit the appearance of your driveway, cutting them into different shapes and seeking out the best earthy tones to accentuate desert-style architecture and landscaping. 

Plus, sandstone bricks hold up for a very long time, similar to concrete or traditional bricks. 

5. Porous Concrete

If you want the look of a traditional driveway without making a larger carbon footprint, you can check out porous concrete materials. Porous concrete reduces water runoff, and you don’t need as much of the material to fill the entire space of your driveway. 

Not only can it help the wildlife in your neighborhood thrive, but it is also much less harmful to the environment from a production standpoint. 

We often recommend porous concrete to those who are part of HOAs, as you can typically match the curb appeal of regular concrete and abide by the HOA rules without having your driveway be unsustainable. 

6. Porous Asphalt

If you’re dealing with a long driveway that has tons of water runoff, you might consider looking at a material like porous asphalt. The great thing about this material is that it allows rainwater to seep through and into the soil underneath. This soil, if left underneath regular asphalt, would suffer from dryness. 

Using porous asphalt allows the water cycle to continue. 

Traditional asphalt typically has around 3% of void space, which only allows a little bit of water to run through at a very slow pace. Porous asphalt alternatives, on the other hand, have around 16% of void space. With a porous asphalt alternative, you can make your driveway five times better for the environment.

Local gravel is a good choice for a sustainable driveway

7. Local Gravel

Local gravel is an excellent material for transforming a driveway. When you get your gravel locally, you don’t support or fund international transport, which is one of the main producers of fossil fuels. 

Plus, the money that you use to purchase this gravel will go back into your surrounding economy, which is beneficial to other locals. 

8. Hempcrete Bricks

In a recent construction industry breakthrough, the idea of hempcrete bricks was born. There are many things to love about hempcrete bricks, including the fact that they are much easier to transport because of their lightweight character. 

One of the other great things about hempcrete bricks is that they absorb atmospheric CO2, even once they are made into bricks. Essentially, by installing hempcrete bricks into your property, you get rid of CO2 around your property, all while supporting an industry that is at the forefront of creating greener alternatives to construction materials.

These manufacturers will often use lime-based binders to shape hempcrete into bricks for use, giving them added durability that lasts for years after laying. This is one of our absolute favorite green driveway options and definitely one of the most unique. 

Green Driveway Cost

The cost of a green driveway will heavily depend on the materials that you use to create it. With that said, you can typically expect to spend anywhere from $4.50 to $8 per square foot for driveway materials. If the soil does not require any additional layers, you might be able to build your driveway for around $3 per square foot.

Final Thoughts – Finding the Right Green Driveway Option For Your Home 

We hope that you now have a better understanding of the available eco-friendly materials and green driveway options. There are so many great solutions to upgrade your property while maintaining sustainability.
If you’re looking for a paving company to help you construct your dream driveway, make sure to check out our local directory of top-notch paving companies. For other expert advice regarding paving, head on over to our blog.

Eco-Friendly Parking Lot

With the growing popularity of eco-friendly vehicles, packaging, clothing, homes, and more, it’s time for us to start considering eco-friendly parking lot construction.

There are many eco-friendly parking lot solutions, including eco-friendly pavers, pervious concrete, and direct paths for water runoff.

Today, we want to take you through a few of our favorite eco-friendly parking lot solutions so you can provide an ample place for parking while doing your part to protect the environment. 

How Do Parking Lots Affect The Environment?

Did you know that the environmental costs of a parking structure can exceed the environmental costs of cars?

Creating and maintaining a parking lot requires a large amount of energy and produces an even greater amount of emissions over the course of its lifetime. Beyond that, parking lots often accumulate pollutants, including grease, oils, sediment, and heavy metals. 

When it rains, the water washes these pollutants off into waterways, creating a significant environmental impact. 

Furthermore, the more parking lots we have, the less green space we have room to maintain.

Eco-Friendly Parking Lot

How Do You Make an Eco-Friendly Parking Lot?

Use Eco-Friendly Paint

Paint is one of the most common air pollutants. Many types of paint contain Volatile Organic Compounds, such as xylene, toluene hydrocarbons, ammonia, and glycol. These paints are far from eco-friendly and can wreak havoc on the health of humans, animals, and plants.

Consider bio-degradable paints for your parking lot, containing little to no VOCs.

Direct Water Runoff

Focus on where the rainwater will go when constructing your parking lot. Water will go its natural course if you don’t, eroding soil, damaging your asphalt, and bringing pollutants with it. Therefore, it’s a good idea to construct some type of drainage system that directs rainwater to an area that’s appropriate, such as a lake, swamp, or stream.

Use Eco-Friendly Pavers

The best solution for an eco-friendly parking lot is permeable locking pavers. These unique pavers allow for water infiltration, unlike your standard asphalt or concrete tarmacking. With these kinds of pavers, you don’t need to worry about flooding nearly as much, as rainwater slowly seeps into the ground to recharge local streams and groundwater supply. 

Use Pervious Concrete

While not as green as the pavers mentioned above, pervious concrete provides an element of infiltration when well-maintained. Similar to a plastic pavement system, pervious concrete provides natural rainwater filtration and reduces the number of pollutants found in runoff. 

Plant Grass

Not only do grass parking lots look great, but they are also wonderfully sustainable. Of course, you can’t just plant any only grass, as regular grass attract rut and mud. Instead, we recommend planting plastic pavers to stabilize the grass you plant, thereby improving drainage while keeping your infrastructure intact. 

DO NOTE: Grass is best for parking lots with light traffic. Heavy traffic can kill the grass, leaving you with a bare, ugly, and dead parking lot.

Eco-Friendly Parking Lot

Plant the Correct Plants

It’s a good idea to plant plants native to your parking lot’s region, as these plants should be well-adapted to the moisture of the soil and the local climate. For example, consider planting trees and shrubs for islands or planting long flower beds or strips atop raised curbing. Not only will this make your parking lot more eco-friendly, but it will also make it far more inviting. 

Use Recycled Concrete or Asphalt

You can produce an eco-friendly parking lot with recycled concrete and asphalt. The beauty of this process is that it is far less resource-intensive compared to using new materials. In addition, it’s often easy to recycle these materials from old roadways on-site as well, getting rid of the need for environmentally impactful outsourcing. 

Use a Bio-Based Asphalt Sealant

Regular asphalt can take a mighty toll on the environment, which is why it’s a good idea to find ways to make your asphalt as eco-friendly as possible. We recommend finding PAH-free, low-VOC bio-based asphalt sealants. Not only do these work wonders in repairing and resealing surfaces, but they are also much better for the environment than standard products. 

Maximize Shading

Not only do shade trees and landscaping make for a more aesthetically-pleasing parking lot, but they can also lessen ground heat, enhance air quality, and reduce rainwater runoff. With pervious ground materials and proper shading, you can mitigate the negative impacts of the “urban heat island.”

Use Sustainable Lighting

While you should absolutely have lighting in your parking lot to provide safety and security for pedestrians, it’s important that you choose the correct type of lighting to retain energy-efficiency. We often recommend energy-efficient exterior LED lights, as they last a long time (up to 50,000 hours) and have far less impact on energy sources. 

You can even implement an efficient lighting layout that maintains higher brightness levels in areas with more traffic while placing other lights in low-traffic areas on a motion system.

Eco-Friendly Parking Lot

Factors to Consider

Costs

Modern eco-friendly parking lot construction costs around $69 per square foot, while a simple asphalt paving job costs around $3.85 per square foot. Beyond that, you can expect a few other standard costs for building a sustainable parking lot:

  • Operation and Maintenance – $0.15 per square foot
  • Drainage System – $45 to $60 per linear foot
  • Striping – $346,000 for a 500-vehicle lot

Of course, the main benefit of building an eco-friendly parking lot is that you can reduce your maintenance and energy costs over time. 

Location

It’s important to select the right location to build your parking lot, as it can significantly impact cost, safety, durability, and effectiveness. Make sure to consider a few things:

  • Accessibility – How easy it is to reach the site
  • Topography – The higher ground your parking lot sits on, the better your natural drainage will be
  • Quality of Earth – Don’t build on hilly topography or muddy areas
  • Soil – Find soil that is dry and compact enough to build on

Final Thoughts

With the right amount of research and proper planning, constructing an eco-friendly parking lot can be cost-effective. Environmental protection and conservation start at ground level. YOU can make the change today.