PLNA Meets with PennDOT Secretary on Green Infrastructure
Thursday, October 29, 2015
Posted by: Gregg Robertson
HARRISBURG – In late October, several PLNA members and staff met with PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards to discuss PennDOT’s use of green infrastructure in the design and maintenance of the state’s highway system. The group, led by Dan Dahlkemper of Dahlkemper Landscape Architects and Contractors, included Jim MacKenzie of Octoraro Native Plants, Andy Ernst of Ernst Conservations Seeds, Cathy Corrigan, PLNA president and Gregg Robertson, PLNA government relations consultant.
Green infrastructure is using the ecosystem services provided by plants to improve water quality, reduce stormwater runoff and bring other environmental benefits. In addition, the planned use of plants in highway design can improve safety and save on mowing costs.
Secretary Richards, with her background as an environmental planner, was very open to exploring ways of increasing PennDOT’s use of green infrastructure. She spoke of her initiative to develop ways of making PennDOT’s maintenance practices more sustainable and welcomed the opportunity to receive ideas and advice from PLNA members.
She invited PLNA to provide her with additional information on green infrastructure initiatives in Pennsylvania and other states and to meet again with the PLNA group in three weeks to follow up and plan next steps.
To download a copy of the white paper on green infrastructure that PLNA provided to Secretary Richards in preparation for the meeting, please click here.