Waterway – combines water management and architecture

A "Waterway" combining water management and good architecture in a single system solution

An urban space and a climate change adaptation solution
“Vandvejen” (Waterway) combines water management and good architecture in a single system solution, re-thinking roads as part of the adaptation to climate change in densely built-up areas.

With increasing rainfall and demand for attractive and healthy urban spaces, there is a need to activate the densely built-up town and city in new ways. “Vandvejen” re-creates the town and city’s basic elements as more than a transport system. “Vandvejen” is a robust solution for managing rainwater and an option for creating an attractive urban space, where diverse user groups benefit.
“Vandvejen” consists of two basic parts: a road profile that transports the water, and a “Blue Box”, which receives the water. The “Blue Box” is the water management element, which can deal with ordinary rainfall up to the desired service level, for example 5 or 10 year annual rainfall, while the road’s profile ensures that the system also has the necessary extra capacity to deal with extreme events. The profile efficiently diverts the water away from paved areas and building facades and the risk of water entering cellars etc., is eliminated.
“Vandvejen’s” system structure takes the entire street space into consideration during the design process. By considering the street as more than a conveyor and instead thinking of the road as a location, we can create an attractive urban space, which satisfies the needs of diverse user groups without compromising the safety of road users.
In densely built-up cities, there is a need to supplement the drainage system with sustainable urban drainage solutions if adaptation to climate change is to succeed. The problem is not just one of increasing volumes of water. In towns and cities, the new climate adaptation solutions are primarily and expression of the acceleration in the number of runoff areas that have been created in the last century. Just in Copenhagen, the run-off percentage is now at around 80 %. If major damage is to be avoided in densely populated urban areas, it is necessary to find new ways of managing the water and which also actively involves the citizens in climate change adaptation.
“Vandvejen” ensures that there is both water and attractive new urban spaces. All of this together, without comprising the road’s functional legitimacy as a conveyor of users moving at different speeds.
Middelfart Erhvervscenter
Middelfart Municipality
Middelfart Spildevand
Schulze + Grassov

About author

Klimaspring is setting a new agenda for climate adaptation in dense urban areas, focusing on development, innovation and growth potentials. The goal of Klimaspring is to create better cities and green growth.

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Simon Toft Ingvertsen

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