Water Sensitive Urban Design

"Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) is an emerging urban development paradigm aimed to minimise hydrological impacts of urban development on environment. In practice, the WSDU integrates stormwater, groundwater water supply and wastewater management to:

  • protect existing natural features and ecological processes;
  • maintain natural hydrologic behaviour of catchments;
  • protect water quality of surface and ground waters;
  • minimise demand on the reticulated water supply system;
  • minimise wastewater discharges to the natural environment;
  • integrate water into the landscape to enhance visual, social, cultural and ecological values.

WSUD aims for an integrated approach across various scales, from individual allotments to large subdivision and major catchments. In practice, to apply WSUD principles means to:

  • protect natural creeks and other waterways on site;
  • reduce potable water demand through measures such as water efficient fittings and appliances, rainwater harvesting and wastewater re-use;
  • treat in a decentralised manner urban stormwater for re-use and/or discharge to receiving waters;
  • match the natural water runoff regime as closely as possible;
  • minimise wastewater generation and treating wastewater to a standard suitable for effluent re-use opportunities;
  • integrate stormwater management into the landscape, creating multiple use corridors that maximise the visual and recreational amenity of the development;
  • support water utility innovations." (Cliamte-ADAPT, 2022)

Climate-ADAPT. "Water Sensitive Urban and Building Design". The European Climate Adaptation Platform Climate-ADAPT: Adaptation options. Published August 20, 2016. Last updated November 02, 2022. Accessed January 10, 2023. Link: https://climate-adapt.eea.europa.eu/en/metadata/adaptation-options/wate…