The Penrose Green Street Retrofit project was initiated by the Penrose community as part of Arlington’s Neighborhood Conservation (NC) program, in which communities can apply for funding for projects. The NC program is designed to empower residents to improve their neighborhoods. The Penrose community developed a conservation plan, prioritized potential projects and submitted their request, which was ultimately approved by the Arlington County Board
To improve walkability, the slip lane was removed and converted to a green space. Two heavily planted bioretention cells were installed to capture and absorb runoff, with walking access through the middle. High visibility crosswalks, corner curb extensions and new ADA compliant ramps improved pedestrian safety. The impact of the project included:
More than 4,000 square feet of pavement were removed and converted to green space.
The two bioretention cells capture runoff from 12,197 square feet of impervious area, with a total drainage area of 29,185 square feet
The green space and bioretention were heavily planted with native plants and trees, providing year-round interest and habitat for birds and pollinators.
Overall, by removing excess pavement and replacing it with a community-initiated green space that incorporates significant stormwater benefits, this project created a highly visible and valuable model that can be reproduced in other locations in Arlington County.