Downtown greenspace in Minneapolis features permeable pavement

Downtown greenspace in Minneapolis features permeable pavement

Photo courtesy of Porous Pave

Minneapolis’ new 4.2-acre public park and green space adjacent to U.S. Bank Stadium, home of the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings, is covered in more than 20,000 square feet of porous material.

The permeable material covering Downtown Commons was supplied by Porous Pave, according to a release from the company.

The Commons, completed in August, includes seven areas of Porous Pave XL permeable pavement totaling 19,000 square feet and 120 permeable tree surrounds created using 3,000 square feet of Porous Pave XLS. 

An eco-friendly green building material made in the United States, Porous Pave is a highly porous, durable and flexible pour-in-place paving material. Stormwater drains through its permeable surface at a tested rate of 5,800-6,300 gallons of stormwater per hour per square foot for onsite stormwater retention. The XL formulation is made from 50 percent recycled rubber chips and 50 percent chipped granite aggregate with a moisture-cured, liquid binder. XLS is 100 percent recycled rubber chips.

“The Commons is the centerpiece of the revitalization and redevelopment of the Downtown East neighborhood,” said Jacob Frey, Minneapolis City Council member whose Ward 3 includes the Commons. “The reduction in harmful stormwater runoff and water pollution is one of its many environmental benefits for the entire city.”

“Porous Pave was selected for its permeability, usability and versatility, and ease of maintenance,” said Ryan Potvin, operations manager for Peterson Cos., the project’s landscape contractor. “With its rubber content, it is safe and suitable for foot traffic and wheelchairs, comfortable to stand on and slip-resistant when wet.”

Blackstone Contractors, the installation contractor, poured Porous Pave XL with fine-cut, 1/8-1/4 inch, tan color rubber chips at a depth of two inches atop a two-inch aggregate base for the paved permeable areas. They applied two inches of XLS with special size three-quarter inch rubber chips in the cypress color for the tree surrounds. 

The controlled shredding and processing of discarded tires produces the chips of recycled rubber incorporated into Porous Pave. The Commons’ installation includes rubber recovered from approximately 5,000 scrap tires. 

“The Downtown Commons in Minneapolis is one of our largest projects to date in the Upper Midwest,” said Dave Ouwinga, president of Porous Pave. “It helped us reach an important environmental milestone. This year, we surpassed a total 7.5 million pounds of recycled rubber used in manufacturing our permeable paving material.”


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