Dutch News

14 February 2014
Dutch solution to floods: live with water, don't fight it

Some say that the flood-hit communities in Britain face their wettest start to the year for 250 years. The Dutch are the water-, dikes- and flood specialists and it seems England now needs their expertise to get rid of the water and to learn how to live with the water. Enormous Dutch pumps are pumping water back into the sea, and an interesting Dutch innovation is the successful water square, created to store water during heavy rainfall. 

Room for the rivers
Since the floods in 1953 and in 1993 and 1995 the Dutch have built the Delta works to protect the low lands in the west and they started a new strategy: during floods the water should be able to flow to places where is does not hurt anybody. Room for the rivers by appointing area's that can act as water reservoirs. For this dykes were taken away, farms were placed on mounds so the land around it can be flooded and extra river by-passes were created. Also in the extremely urban west of the country locations are assigned where water can be stored during floods.


Water square
On the Benthemsquarein Rotterdam the world’s first water square has just been realised. An attractive city plaza that offers space for water, sports and greenery. The water square combines water storage with the improvement of the quality of urban public space. The water square makes money invested in water storage facilities visible and enjoyable and generates opportunities to create environmental quality and identity to central spaces in neighbourhoods. It shows the Dutch solution to floods: live with the water, don't fight it.



The Dutch solution to floods: live with water, don't fight it.

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New innovative water square for leisure and water storage







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