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RainWise Program

Managing Stormwater at Home

Rain falling on our roofs, driveways, or compacted soil rushes off quickly to the nearest drain or stream. In big storms, this excess “storm water” can cause sewer backups, or pollute and erode our streams. We can all help reduce runoff and pollution with simple RainWise practices.

Why be RainWise?

  • Reduce flooding
  • Protect property
  • Restore our waters, for people and wildlife

Learn more with the RainWise guide (pdf) and factsheets at right. For printed copies, call the Garden Hotline at (206) 633-0224, or email

Explore stormwater solutions tailored to your property, find examples of projects citywide, or select a contractor on the RainWise Tools website (requires high-speed internet connection).

To find out about new Seattle rebates for installing cisterns and rain gardens, see RainWise Rebates.

Note: These factsheets are for voluntary improvements by homeowners that are unlikely to require a permit. Any project that needs a building permit must meet the requirements of Seattle’s building and stormwater codes. Additional design guidance, and code requirements for projects applying for a Stormwater Facility Credit, can be found in the
Stormwater Flow Control & Water Quality Treatment Technical Requirements Manual.


RainWise videos

Watch videos by UW students on:
Low Impact Development & You
Seattle's LID and RainWise

Related links

Protect Our Waters
Natural Lawn and Garden Care
Backyard Composting
Prevent Pollution in Creeks & Lakes
Rain Water Harvesting
Green Home Remodeling Guides – see the Managing Rainwater guide.
Green Roofs (pdf)

Links to other sites

RainWise - Stormwater Professional Design Seminars.
Rain Garden Care guide (pdf) - from King Conservation District.
Soak Up the Rain - EPA New England’s RainWise practices. Includes information on green roofs.
SEPA Determination of Non-Significance (pdf) and SEPA Environmental Checklist (pdf) for the RainWise program.