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Sustainable Infrastructure

Green infrastructure is an essential component in the solution to our combined sewer overflow (CSO) problem. The more storm water that is absorbed and infiltrated by the various types of green infrastructure, the less storm water reaches our sewers and must be treated. Green infrastructure also leads to higher water quality going into our rivers and streams, and to significant cost savings for taxpayers.

The Office of Sustainability—in cooperation with the Engineering Division of DPW, the Department of Code Enforcement and with input from the private sector—created the Sustainable Infrastructure Initiative to encourage more sustainable infrastructure within Indianapolis. The Green Supplemental Document (GSD), the core element of the Initiative, serves two primary purposes:

1.     Provides guidance to the design community when utilizing green infrastructure methods for storm water conveyance and treatment.
2.     Provides guidance for the Office of Code Enforcement to approve site and building plans that incorporate sustainable infrastructure.

Plans must meet the storm water requirements outlined in Chapter 700 of the Storm Water Manual, but designs and plans that use green infrastructure techniques, as defined in the Green Supplemental Document, to meet those requirements will be approved by the Office of Code Enforcement.

Upon submittal of projects that incorporate these green techniques, permit review will be immediately processed and expedited to the greatest extent possible. This will not only encourage newcomers to low impact development to utilize green infrastructure methods, but it will also reinforce the City's commitment to those already well versed in green infrastructure techniques.

In order to alert the Department of Code Enforcement staff that the project being submitted incorporates green infrastructure, each green project will require a green infrastructure check list to accompany the green project designs. When Department of Code Enforcement staff sees the Sustainable Infrastructure checklist submitted with a project design, it will alert them that the project incorporates green infrastructure and the permit review will be immediately processed and expedited to the greatest extent possible.

Links to the components of the Green Supplemental Document and Sustainable Infrastructure Initiative Checklist are provided below: 

SII Worksheet

Green Supplemental Document

 Table of Contents
 1.0 Introduction
 2.0 Low Impact Development
 3.0 Techniques to Reduce Impervious Cover
 4.0 Green Design Fact Sheets
 4.1 Green Roofs
 4.2 Permeable Pavement
 4.3 Cisterns and Rain Barrels
 4.4 Filter Strips
 4.5 Bioretention (Rain Gardens)
 4.6 Low Impact and Retentive Grading
 4.7 Swales
 4.8 Subsurface Infiltration
 4.9 Inlet & Outlet Controls
 4.10 Filters
 4.11 Subsurface Vaults
 4.12 Detention Basins
 5.0 Stormwater Landscape Guidance Introduction
 6.0 Comparison and Applicability



Appendix 1 Low Impact Development for Big Box Retailers
Appendix 2 LCC
Appendix 3 MMSD Quicksheet
Appendix 4 Conserving and Planting Trees
Appendix 5 Redevelopment Site Design Comparison
Appendix 6 New Development Site Design Comparison
Plant List (.xls)