United Care lead the way with unique approach to flood reduction

The photo shows from left to right: Willem Huizing Buiter (Municipality of Groningen), Tom ter Braak and Henk Stadman (Dark Green), Johan Mooibroek and Hans Kruizinga (United Care).

United Care lead the way in a unique approach to flood reduction at the Euvelgunne Business Park, Netherlands.

Promoting Natural Movement

Promoting natural movement, is our motto. We believe in natural solutions. Because natural solutions are sustainable and contribute to a better world for ourselves and the generations that come after us. We want lead the way in this because we are convinced that a better world starts with you. With every person, every household and every company. If we all do a little bit, we do a lot together!

Rainwater does not belong in the sewer

Clean rainwater flows into the sewer at the Euvelgunne industrial estate. But rainwater does not belong in the sewer. Rainwater that enters the sewer will only need to be purified with the other waste and water. This entails unnecessary energy consumption and sewage treatment costs. If you ensure that clean rainwater ends up in surface water or groundwater, you will not only solve the flooding. This also saves you on energy consumption and emissions.

Green roof and natural drainage of clean rain water

The approach to flooding on our site consists of a green roof with sedum and a wadi: water drainage through infiltration. Landscapers Donker Groep developed the solution, the design and the construction was carried out by the gardeners of Donker Groen.

Knowledge of sustainable solutions

As an innovative forerunner in environmental solutions, the Dutch operating Donker Groep is a leading authority in sustainability. “All our solutions are effective and representative,” says project leader Tom ter Braak of the Donker Group. “Traditionally, the focus in green management is primarily on aesthetics. However, functionality is becoming increasingly important. This project for example, to combat flooding but also, for example, the promotion of biodiversity is becoming increasingly important. That is why our focus is always on sustainable, renewable and energy efficient, both in implementation and in the solution. ”

Tailor-made solution

“With each customized solution for flooding, we first check whether drainage of rainwater to surface water is an option,” says Henk Stadman of Donker Groen. That was not the case with United Care. That is why we opted for storage on our own land and gradual drainage of excess water into the soil. ”

Green roof and water infiltration system

An analysis of the circumstances showed that the best solution in our case consisted of a green roof plus a water infiltration system, a ditch with in-ground. The water infiltration creates extra storage space for the water allowing it to drain naturally. “The green roof stores water and slowly drains excess water towards the water infiltration system. The water infiltration system provides sufficient space here for the storage of rainwater in a storage room that we have installed with infiltration crates. From that storage, the water slowly flows into the bottom, “explains Stadman. An additional advantage is that the green roof keeps our building nice and cool in the summer, which saves on the energy consumption of our air conditioning. ”

Climate measures project Euvelgunne allows companies to drain rainwater on their own land

In the event of heavy rainfall, the flooding on the Euvelgunne industrial estate in Groningen is a problem. The current sewer system cannot handle the water. The construction of a separate rainwater drainage system would be a solution, but that is quite a price tag. Moreover, this would make it difficult for companies in this area to reach them for some time. That is why the Municipality of Groningen and Mijn Waterfabriek started looking for alternative solutions. This resulted in the Euvelgunne Climate Measures project.

Euvelgunne Climate Measures Project

The aim of the project is for companies to collect and remove excess rainwater on their own land. “According to our Municipal Sewage Plan (MSP), every company is formally obliged to keep rainwater on its own site,” says City Management technical specialist of the Municipality of Groningen, Willem Huizing Buiter. “However, it is not our goal to force companies to comply with this obligation. Our approach is to work together with companies in the search and development of solutions. ”

Dutch unique approach

This approach is unique in the Netherlands. Front runners are the four companies that are the first to actively contribute to tackling flooding. In addition to United Care , these are Salomon’s Metals , BMN Building Materials and PerkinElmer Health Sciences . They receive a subsidy from the municipality and also invest in tackling flooding themselves.

Achieve climate targets

“This approach not only solves the flooding, it also contributes to achieving our climate goals because the clean rainwater no longer ends up in the wastewater sewer. That makes quite a difference in sewage treatment, “explains Huizing Buiter. “That is why we support interested companies with subsidy options. All companies on Euvelgunne can participate. The second phase, again with four companies, will start next spring, immediately after the completion of the first phase. We hope that various phases will follow. Because the more companies participate, the better. ”

Final look