Milwaukee showcases "green alley," designed to prevent flooding & basement backups

MILWAUKEE -- Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and Alderman Jose Perez toured a construction project that's underway on Milwaukee's south side on Wednesday, July 22nd. It's one of eight new "green alleys" in the city near Windlake and Harrison.

A Milwaukee “green alley” includes a four-foot-wide strip made of porous pavement or permeable pavers installed down the middle of the right of way. Rain water drains into this middle strip and collects in a system of sand and gravel layers that are two feet deep.

The green alley is designed to capture up to 15,000 gallons of water in one storm.

Officials say water management like this helps to prevent flooding and basement back-ups in the nearby Kinnickinnic River neighborhood. The system also captures pollutants such as soil fragments, fine rocks, dirt, and debris as well as other contaminants before they enter the river.