Redesigned Parking Lot Improves Stormwater Management

The Takeaway: When flooding caused parking and runoff issues, the Florida Coastal Management Program stepped in to fund a parking lot redesign with irrigation, a rain garden, and porous pavement that allows rainwater to pass into the ground below.

Afternoon thunderstorms and rain are common in Florida, but when a popular beach parking lot in the City of Treasure Island flooded with each rain shower, the Florida Coastal Management Program was called in to help. The program worked with the City and Pinellas County to redesign the parking lot using pervious pavement—which allows the rainwater to pass through into the ground below—plus native plants and other features that created a scenic spot with better management of stormwater. Encouraged by positive feedback and the site’s effectiveness, city staff members say they likely will pursue additional pervious pavement projects.

The state coastal program funded excavation of the existing lot and its reconfiguration with pervious pavement, which filters the water and reduces flooding risks. Eight extra parking spaces were added, low-flow irrigation was installed, native vegetation was planted, and a rain garden was constructed. Managers mounted educational signs to explain the reasons for the pervious pavement and the benefits of planting rain gardens at home. (2020)

Partners: City of Treasure Island, Pinellas County, Florida Coastal Management Program