Working together for a resilient Birmingham.

Development of Birmingham’s Surface Water Management Plan

Birmingham Resilience Team recently attended a consultation workshop run by our Drainage Services team on the work they are undertaking on Birmingham’s Surface Water Management Plan (SWMP).  The workshop was attended by colleagues from throughout the Council, Councillors, community and business representatives, Environment Agency colleagues and a range of other stakeholders.  The Council’s Drainage Team has further consultation activities planned to engage on a wider basis and gather views.

A SWMP is a plan which outlines the preferred surface water management strategy in a given location. In this context surface water flooding describes flooding from sewers, drains, groundwater, and runoff from land, small water courses and ditches that occurs as a result of heavy rainfall.

At the strategic stage, Birmingham was split into 14 catchments and a scoring matrix was developed and applied based on historic risk, predicted risk and potential to reduce risk through the planning system. The strategic assessment was completed in February 2011, and catchments were prioritised for further assessment.  This identified 27 hot spots that were screened to determine what further work, if any, was justified as part of the detailed assessment stage of the SWMP. The hot spot areas identified through the intermediate assessment have been modelled.

The SWMP is now at the stage where a number of options are being considered for each local flood risk area and the city as a whole. These are being prioritised based on damages calculations. Some of these options require further modelling and others can be assessed from site visits.  The Council’s Drainage Services are now consulting stakeholders on the options for these priority flood risk areas and considering what can be achieved with the funding available.  Once finalised, the plan will be published on the Council’s website.

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