A U.K. firm has created a water absorbing concrete that I seriously think we need to take a look at and begin using or making here in the U.S. STAT.

This concrete is called “TopMix permeable”  and it acts as a giant concrete sieve/sponge, allowing the rainwater to drain right through it. Working on the traditional Indian model of rainwater harvesting and infiltration, this concrete can save more than 880 gallons of water per minute. But I think its use will be vital in our increasingly dense, urban infill areas that are flat, where water pools and floods during wild rain storms.

  • On an average, it can up take 36,000 mm water per hour
  • The level of water absorption may vary from country-to-country based on its climatic conditions
  • Many Texas areas would benefit from the reduced rainwater

TopMix Permeable can help cities better manage storms — watch this video —  just please don’t tell those folks who still want a tollroad next to the Trinity!

 

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[Editor’s Note: Candy Evans is the founder and publisher of CandysDirt.com and is now running for Dallas City Council in District 11. The opinions expressed in this column are her own.]

My announcement that I am running for Dallas City Council District 11 (and running this blog, of course, too!) has brought out some very interesting and supportive emails. I asked to publish this one, from Beth Carruth in Plano. She is not in my District, in fact she doesn’t even live in Dallas, but she has some strong views on the Cotton Belt line that is being pushed by my incumbent opponent, Lee Kleinman. Lee believes the Cotton Belt line is needed because of the density in the area:

But Dallas City Council member Lee Kleinman, who chairs that city’s transportation committee, said the population density in the northern part of the region and a lack of rail service between two far-flung north-south lines warrants rail service on the Cotton Belt.

If you need some catching up, the Cotton Belt will be a SINGLE line, so you won’t see another train zipping by going opposite way, unless you are at a station. This is cheaper: about $1 billion versus $2.9 billion, and the track would be “fast-tracked” to get it up and running faster. But the single line would also slow things down. One guy I intend to talk with is Carrollton mayor Matthew Marchant, who I bet is related to Kenny.

Single-tracking the Cotton Belt is one reason that Carrollton Mayor Matthew Marchant opposes plans to fast track rail service on the line. He prefers bus rapid transit in the corridor.

“Single track is essentially pointless – you get ‘rail’ but only 30-minute [frequency] and any issue on the track and service is totally disrupted,” Marchant said. “All of the existing light rail lines are double tracked.”

Lee is right: there is a lot of population density in these areas, but Beth says stations are not where the stations will be: (more…)