Low Impact Development Program


As part of the new statewide, Ecology-funded four-year LID training plan project, this workshop series will be given early Fall 2014 to correspond with the beginning of general LID training that will be developed and given across the state. This year’s workshops will also benefit from a recently completed WSU survey of past LID workshop participants (2009-2013). Comments, insights and suggestions obtained from these surveys will be incorporated into the Fall 2014 trainings.

As in the past, the WSU workshop series will provide comprehensive and detailed training for engineers, planners, landscape architects, local jurisdiction staff, and allied disciplines that plan, design, review, build and maintain LID projects. The LID Certificate will also again be offered by the WSU College of Engineering…...read more

Welcome to the WSU Puyallup Low Impact Development Research Program

An extensive body of research conducted in the Pacific Northwest and the U.S. indicates that land development is one the largest threats to our nations aquatic resources, and that conventional stormwater management practices alone are inadequate to fully protect streams, wetlands, and other aquatic resources in the region (Booth, Hartley and Jackson, 2002).

Best available science suggests that a broad category of new stormwater management practices that come under the heading of low impact development (LID) or green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) can improve flow control, water quality treatment and protection of receiving waters. Accordingly, many states across the U.S. are considering adoption of LID practices. The use of LID practices will be required for managing stormwater in western Washington over the next few years as the new NPDES permit is phased in.

While the decentralized LID approach shows promise to better manage stormwater, significant gaps remain in our understanding of the water quality treatment and flow control capabilities of bioretention, permeable paving, green roofs, and other LID practices. Additionally, data is needed to evaluate the performance of LID practices in prolonged wet conditions and soils with low infiltration rates typical in western Washington.

The mission of the WSU Puyallup LID Research Program is to reduce the impacts of stormwater on streams, lakes, wetlands, and coastal areas through effective, research-based application of LID management principles and practices.

The mission of the program is accomplished through several objectives including:
  • Develop a living laboratory with full-scale, replicated LID management practices that serves a center for LID demonstration and education.
  • Conduct detailed and long-term research examining:
    1. Flow control and water quality treatment characteristics of permeable pavement and bioretention systems.
    2. Physical and biological characteristics of bioretention soil.
    3. Physical and biological influence of plants on bioretention flow and water quality treatment performance.
  • Use research data to evaluate and optimize the flow control and water quality treatment characteristics of LID management practices.
  • Use research data to develop or refine models to predict LID performance at the site and landscape scales. Evaluate the ability of LID practices to directly reduce or eliminate the impacts of stormwater pollutants on aquatic organisms.
  • Disseminate research data and design experience to stormwater designers and managers through various venues including the web, technical journals and manuals, annual reviews and workshops.

WSU Puyallup LID Research Program is one of the largest installations in the nation focusing on the rapidly expanding field of low impact development or green stormwater infrastructure and offers the unique capability to conduct long-term research on full-scale, replicated bioretention and permeable pavement facilities.

LID Project Database

Sharing lessons-learned and project successes is as important as sharing research data to that your project is based on. As part of our information-sharing efforts, we are compiling a database of Low Impact Development Projects in the Northwest.

View the interactive map of our project database now!