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Plans to reduce flood risk for Cardiff community

Whitchurch Brook

Cardiff Council is developing plans to reduce flood risk from Whitchurch Brook. The Greener Whitchurch project will explore a range of solutions including green infrastructure, a network of multi-functional green spaces, to reduce surface water run-off and manage local drainage network capacity issues, while enhancing parts of Whitchurch’s public space. The project is part of Cardiff Council’s overarching strategy to ensure the city is ‘stronger, fairer and greener’.

The study area includes the part of Whitchurch Brook that flows from Caedelyn Park in Rhiwbina through Whitchurch to its outfall at the River Taff at Lydstep Park, Gabalfa. Flooding has affected residents and businesses in this area, with more than ten flood events recorded since 1990.

With funding secured from Welsh Government, Cardiff Council has appointed Arup, a leading sustainable development consultancy, to finalise the options, develop the detailed design and secure planning permission.

Councillor Caro Wild, Cabinet Member for Climate Change said:

“Residents in Whitchurch have been affected by flooding and it is likely to get worse as a result of climate change. We need well-designed sustainable urban drainage to improve this community’s resilience to these extreme weather events.

“Building on the success of Greener Grangetown, Greener Whitchurch aims to deliver a range of water sensitive urban design solutions to reduce surface water run-off and manage the amount of water in the local drainage network.

“We are also exploring wider community benefits including sustainable transport, public realm improvements and biodiversity enhancements.

“We are keen to collaborate with key stakeholders and the local community to help shape the detailed design.”

Residents and local businesses are being asked to contact the project team on [email protected] or 02920 024924 to share their experiences and photos of flooding from Whitchurch Brook by Tuesday 25 July. This information will be used to ensure the project team understand the local flooding issues to inform the development of solution options.

More information on the project can be found here: https://greenerwhitchurch.virtual-engage.com

The project team are planning several opportunities for the local community to comment as the proposals are developed throughout the year.  Once the proposals are finalised, the project will seek planning permission.

About Greener Whitchurch:

Whitchurch is a residential suburb three miles north of Cardiff city centre with a flourishing economy and community, with independent businesses, schools, public open space, and community services.

Whitchurch Brook flows south through Rhiwbina, Whitchurch and Gabalfa for around 2.5km, with its lower 0.85km length from Heol Gabriel culverted until its outfall at the River Taff. This project focuses on the area from Caedelyn Park/A470 to its outfall at the River Taff at Lydstep Park.

The area is densely populated with much of the watercourse modified. Over the years residential and commercial development on the historic flood plain have increasingly encroached on the watercourse, increasing the risk of flooding in this area.

Flooding has affected areas along the entire length of the Brook, with more than ten flood events recorded since 1990.

Cardiff Council appointed Arup in September 2019 to investigate the case for flood risk management at Whitchurch Brook and prepare an Outline Business Case (OBC) with a series of options.   Funding has been secured from Welsh Government to develop the design, seek planning permission, and finalise the Full Business Case (FBC).

The project focus is reducing flood risk to existing properties. It is not connected with emerging development proposals such as the Welsh Water sewer pumping station at Hailey Park or the Velindre Hospital project.