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Project: Performing Arts Center- Pinellas Park, Florida (January, 2011)

The construction of the Performing Arts Center's State of the Art parking lot was completed in January 2011. At 1.6 acres, it is by far the largest Permeable Paving System in the State of Florida. In1998, a ¾ acre project was installed in North Florida, and another smaller PICP project was installed in the City of Dunedin recently by PaverCrafters, Inc., an Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute (ICPI) PICP Contractor. Not only is the project aesthetically beautiful, it is cost prudent and most importantly environmentally friendly.

Permeable Interlocking Concrete Pavement (PICP) is comprised of a layer of concrete pavers separated by joints filled with small stones. Water enters joints between solid concrete pavers and flows through an "open-graded" base, i.e. crushed stone layers with no small or fine particles. The void spaces among the crushed stones store water and infiltrate it back into the soil sub grade.

The stones in the joints provide 100% surface permeability and the base filters storm water and reduces pollutants. This filtered water can then recharge the aquifer or be re–used in grey water systems. (Toilets, plants, etc.)

Permeable Interlocking Concrete Paving was introduced to America from Germany in the early 1990's.

This Permeable paving system is designed to accommodate 100 inches per hour flow through! The Pinellas Park system has an additional 18-inch sand filter course to filter the water even more. In the unlikely event this system should become overwhelmed there are two additional provisions to prevent runoff. There is a Bioswale followed by a filtered trap storm system. The purpose of the Bioswale is to remove pollution from any surface runoff.

The system is designed to take 5 times the area of runoff. This parking lot can easily take an additional 8 acres of runoff. The area of 70,000 square feet is designed to hold approximately 35,000 cubic feet or 261,000 gallons of water.

Regular grass will flood or runoff as it only has a flow rate of about 1 inch per hour maximum with no capacity for additional runoff.

The City was able to better utilize the space available to maximize much needed parking without the use of "Detention Ponds" which require costly on-going maintenance. Essentially, the parking lot is the "detention pond." This is a fully sustainable pavement system that is good for the environment and creates an aesthetically pleasing pavement surface requiring very little maintenance. Additionally, high levels of recycled materials were used in the construction.

To test the long term effectiveness and performance of the system the Southwest Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD) has incorporated an inspection device called an "ERIK", which is essentially a column inserted into the profile of the system for monitoring on a regular interval.

Many other Counties and Municipalities are mandating PICP (Permeable Interlocking Concrete Pavements) for LID (Low impact Development) and BMP (Best Management Practices) strategies.

For condominiums, schools of learning, churches, municipal and government structure managers should mandate a sustainable, ecological permeable surfaces BMP plan for responsible development and future planning.

This type of system can also be used on residential projects for those concerned about the environmental impact of runoff into our fragile ecosystem.

This is a victory for the City of Pinellas Park financially, as there will be no re-sealing of asphalt and re-striping of parking stripes. Asphalt is petroleum based and is invasive to the environment. All of the parking stripes are installed with the pavers creating permanent markings for minimal maintenance.

Key Players
Owner City of Pinellas Park, Florida
Tim Cadell, Government Relations Administrator
(727) 541-0721
Engineer Cardno-TBE Group, Clearwater Florida
Bryan Zarlenga, PE, Michelle Giuliani, EI
(727) 531 3505
Prime Contractor MTM Contractors, Pinellas Park, Florida
Tony Tocalino
(727) 528-0178
PICP Contractor PaverCrafters, Inc., Clearwater, Florida
Doug Corey, President
ICPI - PICP Installer
PICP Manufacturer OldCastle Coastal, Tampa
Bill Megrath Technical Representative-PICP
(561) 722-4609
ICPI - PICP Consultant Andrew Vear
(775) 219-9976
  • Veteran Owned Business
  • ICPI Proud Member
  • BBB Accedited Business
  • Belgard Authorized Contractor
  • Build It Green Member