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New city ordinance in Layton encourages water-wise landscaping

Posted at 5:15 PM, Jun 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-23 19:15:49-04

LAYTON, Utah — Layton City is implementing a new city ordinance in hopes to encourage commercial developers to conserve water.

The flowers and landscaping outside of Layton City Hall is beautiful, but not all plants are drought friendly.

Chad Wilkinson, the director for Layton City Community and Economic Development, said they changed a city ordinance recently to take away mandates.

"As development continues and we get more and more housing, we need to look at the water supply," said Wilkinson.

Read - Utah drought report brings worrisome numbers, record lows across state

The old ordinance required businesses to have at least 15 percent of turf in their landscaping -- mostly for curb appeal.

Though it looks good, the water it soaks in could be used elsewhere.

"There's going to be a tremendous impact," said Wilkinson.

The affects will be felt mostly by those in developing single-family homes and commercial businesses.

Wilkinson also tells FOX 13 they are requiring model homes to use water-wise landscaping, which is relatively new for those on the Wasatch Front.

Read - Taking steps to save water could land you a rebate in Utah

"We've taken that minimum requirement away and now we have a maximum requirement for turf grass," said Wilkinson.

The numbers speak for themselves--with just a small park strip, Wilkinson said it takes 12,000 gallons per year to water lawn and 5,000 gallons to water plants.

"This is the right thing to do to adopt water conservation standards moving forward," said Wilkinson.