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Could PurePave help reduce flooding?

It has taken an “army of volunteers” to help Ottawa and the surrounding community combat surging waterways this Spring.

At first, water levels were only predicted to equal those of the presumed once-in-100-years flood in 2017, however we have exceeded the worst seen in 2017 this year. This has prompted city officials to investigate how to mitigate the negative effects of climate change on existing and new infrastructure.

“With climate change we're going to see more of these extreme weather events more regularly. It means we have to think about adaptation and mitigation, and how to move forward together,” says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, while visiting an evacuation centre in the city of Gatineau, Quebec last April.

As a result, the City of Ottawa is working on a new blueprint for how the city will grow — which may entice builders, architects, and engineers to use eco-friendly materials that help soak up rainwater like permeable paving.

In 2019, NRC-IRAP funded PurePave Technologies' most recent research project for Pure-Grid; a more economical and extremely durable permeable surface for industrial and commercial use. "We're excited to showcase our findings," said Davis, "which could mean there's potential for Pure-Grid implementation as a flood reduction strategy in building more resilient infrastructure for our cities.

PurePave is being used in Toronto to transform residences and business into net-zero runoff properties.