Project budget7 755 130 €
ERDF amount4 653 078 €
The 2 Seas region has many urban areas characterised by dense development. Outdated drainage in such areas often cannot cope with heavier rainfall caused by climate change. The problem is due largely to existing development, and risks are increasing due to climate change. There is little experience in retrofitting sustainable urban drainage (SUDS) to existing urban areas: sites typically have too little space to manage surface water within their boundary. The solution lies off-site in the public realm, but this requires new types of cooperation between municipalities and owners not seen before.
The project aims at improving the adaptive capacity of cities to heavy rainfall by demonstrating how SUDS can be retrofitted in public areas normally constrained by existing uses and infrastructure (above or below ground), or ‘historic environment’ protection. The project will demonstrate reduced flooding while protecting or improving amenities, biodiversity, health and wellbeing, local economies and saving public money. The adoption of these approaches will increase adaptation capacity to effects of heavy rainfall and deliver added societal benefits.
The projects main outputs will be:
1. demonstrations that develop, test and implement transferable design principles for tailor made SUDS solutions and nature
2. a guide to retrofitting strategic SUDS in constrained public spaces and how to deliver added societal benefits;
3. A collaborative network and Public/SME procurement partnerships to stimulate innovation for SUDS.
Public authorities and professionals responsible for drainage, citizens and businesses protected from flooding are the main beneficiaries. SMEs will benefit from better collaboration and information.
Cross border approach
All urban areas in 2 Seas area face increasing risks of storm water flooding. Knowledge and experience of SUDS varies widely. These solutions require more than engineering expertise, also facing many institutional barriers that vary between regions and hence a transferable and replicable solution requires cross border cooperation. The partnership brings together organisations with complementary skills and experiences. Working together to deliver solutions at 5 diverse demonstration sites, partners have the joint capacity to develop and test innovative approaches & create guidance for others.
The project has established activity and financial monitoring and reporting proceedures and has submitted three modification requests. It has established a successful series of network events and a network of organisations participating in them. Pilot investment have been jointly planned, and successfully delivered, although some are behind schedule. Partners have identified how to achieve the final results in the last year of the project, through a workshop at the November partner meeting. Partners have learned to value working together and have formed a good project team, learning from each other and working collaboratively. We have experienced the various challenges of retrofitting stormwater drainage in urban areas, and shared experience to develop solutions. We have broadened our understanding of the context of these retrofittings through site visits to pilot areas, and seen that well designed, multifunctional SUDs can have many benefits.