Urban Water - Sustainable Water Management in Urba.. (Urban Water)
Urban Water - Sustainable Water Management in Urban Space
Start date: Jun 30, 2003,
End date: Jun 29, 2008
Today urban water management is not always fully integrated into the urban planning process. Urban water systems have been looked at mainly through a scientific angle which is why the project partners seeks to develop a more holistic, practical approach to the complex problems of surface and sewage water systems. Urban Water is led by Emschergenossenschaft, a German non-profit making organisation, and brings together 7 partners from France, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK. The total cost of this project is €12.5 million. The objectives of this project are manifold. Through five different pilot projects in four different locations, the partnership will test methods to optimise the design of urban water systems thereby reducing sewage overflows and flooding risks and improving water quality. Apart from analysing the technical aspects of these investments, the partnership will also look at ways of developing effective organisational, financial and legal instruments to better integrate urban water systems into spatial planning processes and documents. The various facets of the project have been organised around nine Work Packages. Through transnational co-operation, the partners seek to improve understanding between planners and water managers, update relevant regulations to stimulate sound water management, exchange experience and raise knowledge and awareness to the needs and challenges of water in urban areas. The outcomes of the project will be transferred widely to experts and policy makers so as to have a direct influence on future policies. Achievements: URBAN WATER: The projects success builds on the exchange of partners know-how as well as the actual implementation of pilot projects. The Urban Water project was particularly successful with transferring best-practice instruments and methods to other countries and into their policies (compare to no. 5). Furthermore, integrated planning was fostered between water managers, spatial planners and others concerned. Some examples of the achievements:• New Cooperation: Stimulated by Urban Water the Dutch Municipalities of Arnhem and Nijmegen have strengthened their cooperation also in day-to-day-work. Entering the Urban Water partnership, the responsible project partners started a close dialog that goes beyond the general cooperation of Arnhem and Nijmegen on political level. Based on the discussions within Urban Water a regularly exchange on technical level started within the planning departments of Arnhem and Nijmegen. Public Participation: The scope of public participation differs essentially in the involved countries. Within Urban Water some partners could transfer directly bestpractise examples that they have learned from other partners into their projects. • Technical solutions: One essential proof for the transnational exchange of know-how is the French pilot project Espierre. In order to reduce the flood risk from the Espierre, the original plan was to cover the upstream with concrete. These water management plans for refining the Espierre were presented in the Urban Water partnership. Due to the input based on the background of the experience made by other partners (such as the Emscher in Germany) the plans were optimised for the French partners concerns. The newly developed plans will lead to great effects on the water quality in the Espierre which has transnational consequences to Belgium.• Political discussions: The presentation of international experiences in sustainable storm water management has activated a policy-making process in Scotland. The approaches and implementation of disconnection and related planning principles are of great interest of the Scottish partner enfrewshire Council. The training on the project within Urban Water was used to send a Scottish delegation to the Netherlands and Germany. The experiences made on this exchange had great influence on the delegates from Renfrewshire Council, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and Scottish Water. The next milestone was the Urban Water Conference in Paisley, April 2006. More than 300 delegates from Scotland and England visited the Conference focussing on integrated planning and surface water management. The results feed now a broad discussion about the application of Scottish planning processes.
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