William Eichler 04 May 2018

Housing should be ‘more resilient’ to flood damage, architects say

The Government needs to help home owners and communities become more resilient to flood damage rather than just focus on keeping the water out, an architecture charity says.

A new report from the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has argued Whitehall needs to build homes and buildings that will be ‘future-proofed’ against flooding.

In order to achieve this the report recommended the Government develop a new approach to decision-making and regulation in tackling flooding threats, and encourage innovation in flooding resilience in the housing and urban design sector.

RIBA proposed Whitehall pilot ‘Licences for Innovation’ to examine the effectiveness of new approaches to managing flood risk in new developments.

The charity also recommended the Government examine the potential for regulations on flood resilience to be linked to Flood Zone Designations through Building Regulations and planning policy.

Currently, one in six homes in the UK are at risk of flooding – a number that is expected to double by 2050. It is estimated it causes an average of £1.4bn of damage each year to businesses and households.

‘In the next 30 years, the number of homes at risk of flooding is expected to double. Now is the time to adapt and think creatively about how to tackle this threat,’ said RIBA President Ben Derbyshire.

‘The RIBA urges the Government to step up and encourage the collaboration and innovation needed to create new homes and communities that are resilient to the devastating effects of flooding.’

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