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Sustainable drainage scheme at Mill Street in Pontypridd complete

Written by on 18th June 2021

Rhondda Cynon Taf Council has completed work on a pilot sustainable drainage scheme at Mill Street in Pontypridd – which has introduced green features to help reduce surface water flooding and divert it from traditional drainage systems in heavy rainfall.

The pilot, which is fully-funded by Welsh Government, has introduced a tree pit and rain garden to provide an adaptive form of flood alleviation that improves the area’s aesthetics and biodiversity, and is also resilient for the future.

The new rain garden is sized at 35m2, and will provide drainage for the surface water run-off from the nearby concreted car park, which is 1,085m2.
Prior to the works, water run-off from this area would flow directly into the drainage systems – and it is hoped this will be reduced by up to 50% following the delivery of the pilot scheme.
The Council will now monitor and test the scheme via inspection chambers, which will provide a comparison between water running into the rain garden, and the traditional drainage route either side of it. There is also hoped to be an improvement in water quality from being treated when filtering through the rain garden – in comparison to it directly flowing into the drainage system and
ultimately into the river.

Councillor Andrew Morgan, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Highways and Transportation, said: “I’m pleased that this pilot sustainable drainage scheme in Pontypridd  Town Centre has now been delivered, thanks to funding secured from Welsh Government. It provides an innovative solution to the persistent surface water flooding which is experienced at this location during heavy rainfall, and conforms to the Council’s wider Climate Change strategy and commitments “The scheme has the potential to bring additional benefits, including reducing the pressure on the drainage system at key times and improving water quality – and the Council will now monitor these aspects to see if these potential benefits have been realised. The scheme also has the added bonuses of  increasing biodiversity and visually improving the local street scene.”

If the pilot is found to be successful, the intention is to develop standard details so this type of green infrastructure can then be built into a wide range of projects right across a range of Council services – from Regeneration to Highways and Parks – ensuring it is more widely considered and used.