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Region 1: EPA New England

Hurd Field Porous Pavement Education Project

Background/Location:

Rainwater and snow melt runs off the surface of traditional pavement and carries pollutants to our water ways. Porous pavement lets water infiltrate into the soil through gaps in all the layers to the groundwater. It also filters pollutants from stormwater and helps protect the water quality of Mill Brook. Since optimum performance of porous pavement depends on these air spaces, sand should not be used in the winter. Porous pavement must be vacuumed (not swept) clean to avoid clogging. Watch the video below to learn more about the porous pavement project on Hurd Field.

Porous Pavement Education Project: Hurd Field, Arlington, Mass.

Porous Pavement Education Project: Hurd Field, Arlington, Mass. [3:44 min.] Click icon for EPA disclaimer.

Benefits of Porous Pavement:

  • Reduces the volume and velocity of runoff
  • Improves water quality by capturing the water and filtering it
  • Replenishes groundwater
  • Reduces impacts of flooding during storm events
  • Eliminates the need for sanding and reduces the need for road salt in winter months

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Hurd Field Porous Pavement:

Cross section view of porous pavement and underlying substrate

Cross section view of porous pavement and underlying substrate





See the final draft design of the
parking lot (PDF)
(2 pp, 4.6MB).

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Current Status of Project:

The porous pavement project was completed in September 2012. The lot is open and available for use. EPA and the Town of Arlington held a Ribbon Cutting event to celebrate the completion of this project on November 20, 2012.

The project will be maintained by the Town of Arlington as outlined in the Operation and Maintenance Plan (PDF) (7 pp, 1.4 MB) generated for this project.

EPA presented this work to the Mystic River Steering Committee's Municipal Subcommittee on November 15, 2012.

Photo Gallery

Click on the photo gallery below to see photos of the Hurd Field Porous Pavement Education Project.

Click to pause/play slideshow.

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Before Construction (Spring 2012):

  • View of Mill Brook and Hurd Field parking lot looking west

    View of Mill Brook and Hurd Field parking lot looking west

  • View of Hurd Field parking lot looking north west (from Minuteman Bikeway)

    View of Hurd Field parking lot looking north west (from Minuteman Bikeway)

  • Path leading to parking lot from Minuteman Bikeway

    Path leading to parking lot from Minuteman Bikeway

  • Northern side of parking lot, adjacent to Mill Brook

    Northern side of parking lot, adjacent to Mill Brook

  • View of parking lot (looking east) with Hurd Field in the background

    View of parking lot (looking east) with Hurd Field in the background

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During Construction:

Week of 8/13/2012

  • Erosion control measures installed around the perimeter of the site.

    Erosion control measures installed around the perimeter of the site.

  • Existing asphalt being removed from the parking lot.

    Existing asphalt being removed from the parking lot.

  • Exisiting asphalt being removed and ready to be taken off-site.

    Existing asphalt being removed and ready to be taken off-site.

Week of 8/20/2012

  • Site being graded and new materials being added.

    Site being graded and new materials being added.

  • One of the many boulders that was removed from the base-layer.

    One of the many boulders that was removed from the base-layer.

  • Construction crew digs one of two infiltration trenches.

    Construction crew digs one of two infiltration trenches.

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After Construction:

  • A man operates a machine to pour the pavement.

    A man operates a machine to pour the pavement.

  • A crew member rolls out recently poured pavement to make the surface smooth.

    A crew member rolls out recently poured pavement to make the surface smooth.

  • The pavement crew spreads a section of asphalt with shovels.

    The pavement crew spreads a section of asphalt with shovels.

  • A section of the pavement to show the thickness of the pavement in place on the parking lot.

    A section of the pavement to show the thickness of the pavement in place on the parking lot.

  • The parking lot after 2 layers of pavement have been poured, spread and rolled.

    The parking lot after 2 layers of pavement have been poured, spread and rolled.

  • This picture shows the difference between the traditional pavement (on the left) and the porous pavement (on the right).

    This picture shows the difference between the traditional pavement (on the left) and the porous pavement (on the right).

  • Another view of the seam between the traditional and porous pavement portions of the parking lot.

    Another view of the seam between the traditional and porous pavement portions of the parking lot.

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Ribbon Cutting Event:

  • Regenerative Air Sweeper operator explains how to best maintain porous pavement.

    Regenerative Air Sweeper operator explains how to best maintain porous pavement

  • Arlington Fire Department uses a firehose to demonstrate water infiltration through the porous pavement.

    Arlington Fire Department uses a firehose to demonstrate water infiltration through the porous pavement.

  • Water puddles on the traditional pavement, but has fully infiltrated through the porous pavement.

    Water puddles on the traditional pavement, but has fully infiltrated through the porous pavement.

  • Dignitaries cutting the ribbon.

    Dignitaries cutting the ribbon.

  • EPA Regiona Administrator, Curt Spalding, discusses the importance of urban stormwater management and the benefits of porous pavement.

    EPA Regiona Administrator, Curt Spalding, discusses the importance of urban stormwater management and the benefits of porous pavement.

  • Mystic River Watershed Association Executive Director, EK Khalsa, discusses this project and its benefits to local waterways.

    Mystic River Watershed Association Executive Director, EK Khalsa, discusses this project and its benefits to local waterways

  • Arlington Town Manager, Adam Chapdelain, addresses the crowd.

    Arlington Town Manager, Adam Chapdelain, addresses the crowd.

  • EPA's Ken Moraff, emcee, greets the crowd and shares some personal stories about porous pavement and this parking lot.

    EPA's Ken Moraff, emcee, greets the crowd and shares some personal stories about porous pavement and this parking lot.

  • Traditional pavement meets porous pavement.

    Traditional pavement meets porous pavement.

  • A look at the finished pavement.

    A look at the finished pavement.

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Contacts:

Technical Contact
Ray Cody (cody.ray@epa.gov)
(617) 918-1366

Education & Outreach Contact
Caitlyn Whittle (whittle.caitlyn@epa.gov)
(617) 918-1748

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For more local information and specific activities regarding this project, check out the Town of Arlington's web site Click icon for EPA disclaimer..

Learn more about Low Impact Development and community projects by checking out EPA's Soak Up the Rain Campaign web site.

University of New Hampshire's Stormwater Center Click icon for EPA disclaimer. is a resource for information on porous pavement and other low-impact development methods.

Local land use officials addressing the relationship of land use to natural resource protection can learn more about low-impact development for stormwater management through The University of Connecticut's Nonpoint Education for Municipal Officials (NEMO) program. Click icon for EPA disclaimer.

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