If you like a pretty yard, hate mowing, and live in Chevy Chase, there's a solution for both you and the environment. According to Gazette.net, the city will be the first in the area to participate in RainScapes, a pilot program to help reduce storm runoff into local streams and Chesapeake Bay by replacing grass with gardens.
The Montgomery County program is offering homeowners and businesses a rebate for getting their landscapes to absorb more water. The program is currently focusing on the county's oldest neighborhoods which don't have modern stormwater drainage systems. As one of the oldest suburbs in the DC area, Chevy Chase was chosen as the starting point.
One local resident, Judith McGuire, received $500 to help cover the cost of turning her front yard from grass to a rainwater garden filled with Christmas ferns, milkweed, goldenrod and other local plant varieties. RainScapes hopes to get at least 30 percent of homeowners in Chevy Chase to participate in their program and reduce drainage system runoff by 30 percent. For most people, it can be as simple as creating a rain garden like Judith's.
The maximum rebate allowed for a residential project is $1200, and pay-outs are based on individual project costs. The total program budget is about $350,000, with $100,000 set aside for rebates. RainScapes will also be targeting entire neighborhoods, hiring contractors to put in rain gardens, rain barrels, and permeable driveways to reduce runoff. The details and costs to individual homeowners are still under discussion.
Even if RainScapes is not currently working with your city or neighborhood, the county hopes that individual homeowners will consider creating rain gardens or other systems to protect the bay area from runoff issues. The health of the planet really is everyone's responsibility.
Living where everyone cares for the environment is another reason to call the DC area home. Contact me, Mynor Herrera, today for expert help buying or selling in the DC, MD, & VA areas! I also specialize in Bethesda and Chevy Chase, as well as the sub-divisions of Rosemary Hills, Rock Creek Forest, East Bethesda & Whitehall Condominium.