Currently one in six homes in the UK are at risk of flooding – a number that is expected to double by 2050.
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) published a new report ‘The value of flood-resilient architectural design’ on 3 May 2018 outlining what actions Government needs to take to help create homes and communities that are resilient to flood damage.
The report stresses that the UK can no longer base its approach to managing flood risk on simply keeping the water out. Government needs to enable communities to manage their risks. This means better equipping people and businesses to live with water, being able to stop water entering their properties and speeding recovery if it does. Flooding causes an average of £1.4 billion of damage each year to businesses and households.
The report makes five key recommendations for Government, with the key one being to encourage greater uptake of flood-resilient design by home and building owners exposed to flood risk.
The report advocates building flood-resilient homes and buildings. To do this it recommends that Government develops a new approach to decision-making and regulation in tackling flooding threats.
It also encourages innovation in flooding resilience in the housing and urban design sector, and introduces specific building regulations for flood resilience and resistance – ensuring that these are taken up by any building owner exposed to flood risk.
The report concludes that embedding flood-resilient design will help future-proof new developments and deliver greater value for money when investments in new flood defences are made. In addition, there is room for the UK to become a leader in this area, paving the way with innovative responses and solutions to flooding.