Resilience measure: Water square


The water square combines water storage with the improvement of the quality of urban public space. It makes money invested in water storage facilities visible and enjoyable. When heavy rains occur, rainwater that is collected from the neighbourhood will flow visibly and audibly into the water square. Short cloudbursts will only fill parts of the square. When the rain continues, more and more parts of the water square will gradually be filled with water. The rainwater will be held in the square until the water system in the city has enough capacity again. Then the water can run off to the nearest open water.
(De Urbanisten, Water squares, accessed on Sept. 2016)

Co-benefits and impacts

The watersquare can be understood as a twofold strategy. Apart from storing water, it also generates opportunities to create environmental quality and identity to central spaces in neighbourhoods. The water square is a measure to improve the quality of the open water in urban environments. Water squares make the dynamics of water visible in the town or city and by doing so can help enhance the aesthetic value. They can also be combined with other public urban functions and as such create spaces with multiple purposes.
(De Urbanisten, Water squares, accessed on Sept. 2016)


Even though this measure is considered as long-term measure, it is expected to store water only for a short time i.e. during precipitation and/or food events.

Related Links

Time scales (Show all)

Long term

Measure types (Show all)


Problem types (Show all)


Last modified: Sept. 21, 2016, 10:13 a.m.