A client wants to use a grasspave product in her new 2,500 s.f. driveway/parking area. It's a Mid-Atlantic residence occupied by two people and two staff. Not a lot of traffic. Runoff is being captured in other ways, so we don't need to maximize the sub-base for water storage. Any thoughts on products (there are many out there now), and grass survivability, and grass type? Any thoughts appreciated. 

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Hi Cheryl, GrassPave is nice, but not so much so women who wear any heels of any height.  There are different ways to approach the design of it. 

First, just a fine pea gravel drive with edging will work better than GrassPave and has kind of a sexy sound when pulling up.  You could include a hard surfaced drop-off area at the front door if space allows it.  Thinking of those old French Palaces with a center island of plantings or water feature;

Second, you could create a series of square/rectangular concrete pads that are pea gravel filled in between to capture the surface runoff as it crosses the driveway.

Hope this helps.

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Much appreciated Walter. the client doesn't care about the high heels issue, she just doesn't want to see that much hardscape (non-green). The new parking is for two barns over 100 feet from the house (cars, tractors). If I do the concrete pad option, do you think I could go 10' square without any control joints? Then they have to create separate forms for each one. Would that break the bank? But then I could do grasspave in between, which she would like. We are in Zone 7 so snow plowing is a consideration. (All the photos the client has put on her Houzz account for me are from projects in much warmer climates.) Your thoughts are appreciated.

Sorry for the delay Cheryl.  If snow plowing will be performed, then a solid surface will be required.  Consider, of course, scratching/scraping of the hard surface and other deformities that will occur. 

Maybe simple stamped and stained concrete will do the trick with a mottled textured finish.  This could hide some deformities of the snow plowing operations.  You can use a softer, cooler color as well, so it blends into the natural surroundings.  Pads shouldn't be used due to the fact they will get caught by the snow plowing blade and get destroyed, same with Grass Pavers.

My hometown growing up in Lynchburg, VA has snow and people have asphalt driveways, concrete or pea gravel.  Concrete will chip and crack over time if not done properly and pea gravel cannot be plowed, but applying salt to melt the ice is another option.

Here is a color chart for color selection for the integral colored concrete.

http://www.butterfieldcolor.com/decorative-concrete-colors.php

This does not solve the drainage problem, but running perforated piping along and crossing under the drive at certain points can solve the drainage issue as long as there is some slopes to deal with.

I know, the blade catching the edges of large floating concrete slabs is a concern. I'm against impervious surface for that much road (2,500 sf). At this point my solution can wait until winter as they just delayed the barn construction. I will keep you posted and greatly appreciate your time and attention.

Cheryl

My pleasure and look forward to it.  Thanks.

I've used GrassPave (#2 I think). It has held up well with tifway bermuda #419 to light residential use in SC. 

grass will not hold up to daily driving...

this should only be used as a temporary parking area, of a fire lane or a drive that is only used occasionally.

Great advice from Walter and Alan  

I have tried the grass pave but do not use it anymore.  My area (ohio valley) has heavy clay soils, and the grass pave sub-base is too incompatible in structure-- making it too dry or too wet (depending on relative elevation).

Chris, Thanks! You are correct. The issue stems from the client's visual preferences not the runoff on their 28 acre lot. I like your chip seal suggestion and will look into that. I've not heard that term before. She won't go for concrete and the grass pave idea probably won't hold up to the traffic except for in the overflow areas. I appreciate your comments and will report back!

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