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Successful and Beneficial Green Infrastructure

Most people are familiar with “gray” water infrastructure — the hard, concrete and metal pipes, holding tanks, pumps, water tunnels, and treatment plants. These systems play a key role in managing drinking water, wastewater and combined-sewer systems.

“Green” infrastructure is a newer approach to stormwater management that mimics nature by capturing stormwater so it can either be reused or seep into the ground where it falls, rather than flowing into underground sewer and storm pipes. Methods for stormwater capture include rain gardens, pervious pavement, planted swales, and storage containers such as cisterns and rain barrels. Green-infrastructure features can help reduce stress on water systems and can provide good local jobs, as well as making the communities where they’re installed healthier and more beautiful.

Both gray and green infrastructure are important components of water infrastructure systems statewide. Communities with combined sewer systems in particular will be evaluating gray- and green-infrastructure approaches to come up with the best combination that meets regulatory requirements cost-effectively and in a manner that provides tangible community benefits.

Resources

Facing Our Future: Infrastructure Investments Necessary for Economic Success

This report presents the long-term needs and required infrastructure investments in the areas of electric power, transportation and water systems. The report provides a fact-based, analysis-driven opportunity to understand and explore realistic ways in which New Jersey can spur economic development – and economic success – through infrastructure investments. 2013.

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Growing Pains: A Burgeoning Jersey City Contends With Aging Water Infrastructure

This case study highlights the prescient investment in water infrastructure the city made in the 1970s that is allowing its booming growth today. 2014.

Camden: Rising above the Floodwaters

This case study describes the effects on Camden of its inadequate water infrastructure conditions, including increasing vulnerability to flooding. 2014.

The Steps Hoboken Is Taking to Reshape Development Amidst Rising Sea Levels

This case study gives context to flooding in Hoboken and steps the city is taking to reshape development and mitigate growing flood risks. 2014.

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