Environment Agency objections overcome for major development in a high-risk zone
Located deep within Flood Zone 3a (‘High Risk’) a proposed development involved a five-fold increase in residential units with ground levels considerably below the modelled flood levels. Plus, there was no obvious safe access/egress route to or from the site.
To secure planning approval our client asked us to carry out a Flood Risk Assessment and recommend flood management solutions which would help them satisfy the Environment Agency and local planners.
Alongside our recommendations on flood defences and the introduction of places of safety, our Flood Risk Assessment argued the developments benefits significantly outweighed the risks – hence qualifying as an ‘exceptional case’ under the PPS25 Guidance Notes.
Significant betterment could be provided relative to the existing site layout via the implementation of innovative design features and flood mitigation measures including:
- Intelligent location of stairwells, plant rooms, parking areas and flood warning measures.
- Generation of a lower floor evacuation strategy to a designated area of safe refuge on upper floors.
- Vulnerability reducing design features including flood barriers, flood proofing and SUDS.
- Negotiation with local planners & emergency services to develop rescue plans for occupants of the building during a flood event.
The Environment Agency removed objections & planning was secured.