Retro Installation of SuDS into an Existing Urban Area

Greener Grangetown’ in Cardiff is a good example of the successful retro installation of SUDS features into an existing urban streetscape. 

For many older cities and towns, sustainable water management has been steadily rising up the agenda for years. Existing ageing infrastructure built for a different era and population, coupled with increased hardscape areas and roads for today’s living means that drainage infrastructure in some areas is at or above capacity. 

Heavy downpours result in the system being overwhelmed resulting in flooding and associated pollution and damage. The harsh reality is that options to increase the capacity of existing drainage pipe networks are very expensive and unsuitable in the face of climate change.

What can be done, however, is develop sustainable and resilient SUDS systems that mimic natural drainage, allowing surface run off to be managed as close to the surface and as close to its source as practicable.

Source: Greenblue

Greener Grangetown’ in Cardiff does just that, by re-landscaping the urban realm with soft landscape and SUDS interventions. It’s a good example of the successful retro installation of SUDS features into an existing urban streetscape. 

Rain gardens and kerbside planting areas have been installed to help soak up rain water. These have the added benefits of enhancing the local area and its biodiversity and wildlife as well as improving air quality and reducing noise.

Rainwater has been removed from the sewer, not only reducing the energy used for pumping and treating the wastewater, but also freeing up space to help the region adapt to more extreme weather conditions which are caused by climate change.

 

The work was commissioned by City of Cardiff Council, Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water and Natural Resources Wales and led by Arup.

Arup’s water engineers and placemaking team designed solutions that integrated SUDS with public realm improvements, with GreenBlue advising on the tree pit installations, and assisting the Greener Grangetown team from concept through to completion. Click here to read more.

 

 External Sources

Greenblue website: A Greener Grangetown