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New Guide to Sustainable Drainage in the Urban Landscape

Posted: Monday 13th February 2012

A detailed and informative Guide to Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) in the Urban Landscape has been published as part of the Engineering Nature’s Way initiative by Hydro International.

The guide can be downloaded for free by visiting, the web-based knowledge resource for SuDS and flooding in the UK. It is jointly authored by Prof Richard Ashley of EcoFutures , Sue Illman of Illman Young Landscape architects and Alex Stephenson, Stormwater Director of Hydro International and chair of the British Water SuDS focus group.

The Guide considers the issues surrounding the development of SuDS techniques in urban settings. Topics considered include SuDS and Ecosystems Services, Green Infrastructure, Water Sensitive Urban Design and retrofitting SuDS, including in highways applications. The Guide also provides practical advice on component selection from the full SuDS toolbox.

“Sustainable surface water management measures can help create a more balanced and natural ecology in our towns and cities. For too long, we have paved over green spaces and treated the resulting surface water runoff as a problem or waste,” said author Alex Stephenson.

“A creative approach to planning for water above ground – in which stormwater is seen as a resource providing multiple benefits - can help make the urban landscape a more balanced, healthy and enjoyable place to live.

“The Guide demonstrates that a correct interpretation of SuDS is one that can be applied to every development. It’s simply no longer acceptable to have an ‘either or’ choice between SuDS or ‘not possible’. A range of techniques, natural, manufactured or combined are available to recreate (or improve on) natural drainage paths.”

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