Climate adaptation measures at World Horti Center


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Heavy rainfall will occur with an increasing frequency. It is therefore important to take measures to prevent water nuisance and even damage. To ensure the succes of such measures, government and bussiness should collaborate in the urban designing and construction of buildings.

The region of Westland is heavily urbanised, meaning not much open space is left for the use of collecting and store water. It is therefore necessary to find creative solutions which can store, collect and discharge the surplus of water. One of the solutions would be collecting and storing the water at the place where it falls, for example on rooftops or on parking lots. Other measures to increase the spongeness of an area could include a semi-infiltratable pavement, green rooftops and infiltration-banks.


In March 2018 the World Horti Center officially opened, a knowledge sharing and inovation center and platform in which bussiness, the educational sector, research institutes and government can come together to collaboratively work with and inspire each other.

Together with ‘Demokwekerij’, the educational institution Lentiz, and the auction FloraHolland, a showcase concersing water management was set up. The goal of the measures which are taken at the World Horti Center is to increase the ability of the area to hold and infiltrate water through on top of the expected measures in standard government regulation. Three different measures have been implemented: a swale, porous paving materials at the parking lots and ground infiltration.

Bioswale © Floris Bogaard
Open paving material

At the current time not much experience exists on storing water in peat ground. Therefore, the project at the World Horti Center focusses on gathering such experience to be able to then share it with the region of Westland. Factors looked at are the required size, the best maintenance methods and the efficiency of the though of solutions on the short and long term.

With who?

The following stakeholders played a role in the process and development:

  • The municipality Westland
  • Water authority of Delfland
  • Lentiz (a school of applied sciences)
  • Demokwekerij
  • External expertise
  • Flora Holland
  • Gardener Van Der Drift

Stakeholder engagement & co-creation

A couple of workshops with the aforementioned stakeholders resulted in a collaborative climate adaptive design. During the opening of the World Horti Center in March 2018, demonstrative experiments took place to test the effectiveness and state of the semi-infiltrative pavement and wadi, and to inspire the attending visitors with the taken measures. These experiments were carried out during the opening day on different locations by students who were supervised by their professors, and can be repeated in the future to measure any possible changes. The data of these experiments has been processed and can be used to compare with data from other tests in the region or internationally.

porous paving material