Building better, more resilient cities

As our cities grow and deal with the impacts of climate change,  the decisions we make need to be smarter and more connected if we are going to solve the five big challenges in climate resilience: floods, droughts, heat stress, groundwater depletion and surface-water pollution.
We can’t do it alone. That’s why we’re working closely together with city planners, architects, engineers and many others to ensure our cities can adapt to climate challenges in order to protect us now and in the future.

 

8°C

Urban tress can help cool the air up to 8°C

70%

of the world's megacities is experiencing drought

100%

increase in global energy efficient building activity every 3 years

Our perspective

Working on building a blue-green infrastructure with a solid stormwater solution is a puzzle of size and space below-ground. It's also about sustainability and environmental impact, traffic load, maintenance requirements, local regulations and more. Small actions and making every decision count can have a big impact on resolving this puzzle. 

Enabling rainwater reuse
Required by law in most countries, rainwater tanks to prevent flooding, currently lay empty 95% of the time, with most of the water released to the sewer system after a heavy rain. If we used available technology, we could reuse the water to maintain greenery and infiltrate it back to our groundwater to avoid depletion.

Avoiding sewer overflows in heavy rainfall
Digital tools like sensors that enable predictive maintenance and improved product design can protect the city’s sewer systems from failing due to clogging. Sensors can monitor and ensure cleaning is done only when needed – saving the city costs and resources. While road gullies with features like filter options protect the sewers from clogging due to debris.

Protecting trees
Now more than ever our cities need trees to create shade, resist heat stress and provide us with comfort. And with increased heavy traffic, stress and more paved areas, our trees face difficult conditions. We can help through simple solutions like a root tank which provides trees with air to breath and collects water for dryer periods.

We need to future-proof our assets and create new standards. In this process, I ask the question: How do I build solutions that last – despite things like urbanisation, shortage of raw materials, climate changes, digitalisation? It's all within my depreciation time! I am making things for 30 years and in 30 years, it will be 2050! Then we have arrived in a completely new world where we are climate-adaptive, circular, carbon neutral, future-proof, smart.
Sacha Stolp , Director of Innovation for the Future-Proof Assets Program in Amsterdam

Building better solutions