July 18, 2020 / IREUS

Expert workshop underlines necessity for concepts for heavy rain resilience

The online Expert Workshop of the project "RESI-extrem" emphasises the importance of integrated urban development as a precaution against heavy rainfall and the potential of integrated urban development concepts as an instrument for promoting resilience in existing buildings.

Floods from heavy rainfall are increasingly posing major challenges for cities. Up to now, heavy rainfall has been primarily regarded as a problem of drainage planning, while synergies with conversion processes have been considered too seldom in the context of integrated urban development. In the context of an expert workshop of the project "RESI-extrem" held by the Institute of Spatial and Regional Planning of the Faculty on 18-19 June 2020, the importance of integrated urban development as a precaution against heavy rainfall was discussed and the potential of integrated urban development concepts as an instrument for promoting resilience in existing buildings was highlighted.

The first day of the workshop focused on the question of how the issue of heavy rainfall can be incorporated into integrated urban development concepts. The basis for this is a municipal work aid developed in the project to strengthen urban resilience to heavy rainfall, which is based, among other things, on findings gained in the project from two InSEK drafts for neighbourhoods in the small and medium-sized towns of Olfen (NRW) and Schwäbisch Gmünd (BW).

On the second day of the workshop, after the presentation of the method developed in the project for the analysis of heavy rain hazards and risks, the project team and the experts discussed the applicability of this information and the question of what requirements must be made for the identification of hazards and risks in the context of heavy rain. The discourses on both days showed that a sustainable development of existing buildings or neighbourhoods is an important task for the future and that integrated urban development concepts are suitable instruments for the implementation of resilience building in neighbourhoods. It became clear that the availability of basic information, such as analyses of heavy rainfall hazards and vulnerability, is an essential prerequisite for the consideration and balancing of issues of heavy rainfall resilience in urban development. The use of corresponding information is a matter of course for urban development that promotes resilience, and greater sensitisation is necessary both in specialist administrations and among private owners. The discussions are an encouraging sign that in the future, heavy rainfall prevention should be more strongly integrated into urban development processes and that aspects of population sensitivity should also be taken into account more strongly in the process. The project consortium thanks all experts for their participation and valuable suggestions and looks forward to further exchange.

The online workshop marked the conclusion of the three-year joint project funded by the BMBF within the framework of the funding guideline "Implementation of the Lead Initiative Future City". Under the direction of the Institute of Spatial and Development Planning of the Faculty, the team consisting of project partners from the Institute of Spatial Planning of the TU Dortmund University, the planning office Plan+Praxis and the two practice partners Olfen and Schwäbisch Gmünd has been working since 2017 on new strategies for cities in dealing with ubiquitous extreme events.

Contact
Britta Weißer, M. Sc., Institut of Spatial and Regional Planning, Pfaffenwaldring 7, D-70569 Stuttgart, +49 711 685-66337, britta.weisser@ireus.uni-stuttgart.de
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