What Can Residents Do to Help?
Residents can help reduce flooding and water problems around their homes by regularly checking to see that gutters and downspouts are cleaned out, inspect to insure downspouts and sump pumps have an appropriate air gap and inspect the perimeter of the foundation of their homes to insure that soil is graded away from the house. Residents can help maximize the operation of the Village’s storm sewer system by monitoring and removing leaves and debris from existing storm sewer inlets in the streets.
While the Village works diligently to ensure that inlets are kept clear, there are literally thousands of inlets throughout the community. Rain events can carry debris that can quickly clog inlets before Village crews can arrive to clear them. Because of this, residents are encouraged to “adopt an inlet” and help clear those inlets that are in front of their homes or on their block. This is a great way to help ensure that Glencoe’s storm sewer system can operate more effectively.
Best Management Practices (BMPs), describe the different cost-effective ways residents can store and filter storm water. Utilizing BMPs such as rain gardens, rain barrels, permeable paving, and green roofs, can help control excess water runoff and the quality of water being drained into the Village’s storm sewer lines. Before proceeding with any BMP improvements, please contact the Village of Glencoe Public Works Department for permit requirements at: 847-835-4111. For more information on the BMPs mentioned below, go to: Greening EPA
Rain gardens are aesthetically pleasing and a cost effective tool for residents to utilize in managing storm water. They are constructed by making a shallow depression and employing native plants to absorb storm water and filter the amount of runoff flowing into the Village’s sewer system. The gardens also benefit animal and important insect species by providing nutrients and shade. Residents can choose between different flower and shrub types to incorporate as they see fit, providing a flexible option for storm water management.
Rain barrels collect storm water and store it for other uses. They can be attached to gutters not connected to the Village’s sewer system and provide water for watering lawns, flowers, and other plant materials. Instead of the direct flow and runoff of storm water into the ground and sewer systems, water can be recycled and utilized by residents for household needs. The barrels are affordable and designed to be aesthetically pleasing. Information regarding the sale of rain barrels may be found on the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago's website. MWRD Rain Barrel Program
In contrast to traditional paving which does not allow water to penetrate the surface causing excess storm water runoff, permeable paving materials are porous and allow water penetration. Instead of direct runoff into the Village’s sewer systems, these paving techniques allow some water to be soaked into the ground reducing runoff. Instead of utilizing traditional asphalt for driveway resurfacing, for example, residents can consider implementing permeable paving concretes and asphalts.
Green roofs utilize planting beds on top of buildings to reduce excess storm water runoff. Specialized materials can be installed on a building thereby reducing runoff, improving air quality, and reducing energy costs by serving as an insulator, cooling the dwelling in the summer and heating it in the winter. These roofs can be designed to reduce the amount of maintenance required and the costs are comparable to a typical garden.
Filter strips are designed to absorb and trap runoff from other areas to avoid excess runoff into sewer systems. They are vegetated areas which absorb runoff in the soil. They are effective in reducing the likelihood of flooding by reducing the amount and rate of runoff. Residents can also utilize native vegetation with these strips for additional absorption capabilities. With low maintenance and cost values, filter strips can be an efficient and effective storm water management solution.