This RainScape scheme is particularly needed in Llanelli as the area sees almost as much storm water in its network as Swansea, despite the fact that Swansea serves three times the number of properties, and three times the area compared with Llanelli.
Between 2013 and 2015, we will be spending £15 million on installing RainScape solutions in Llanelli and Gowerton, with further schemes planned up to 2020.
Queen Mary’s Walk, Llanelli:
In September 2013, we completed a RainScape project to construct a swale on the Queen Mary’s Walk playing field.
A consultation event was held in July 2012 where over 1,000 local residents were invited to have their say on the plans. The scheme also needed planning permission from Carmarthenshire County Council which was approved in early 2013.
During periods of heavy rainfall the swale captures the water, and lets it gradually seep into a below ground storage unit, before releasing it into the sewer network. This delays the time it takes for the water to get into the network. The swale has been planted with a range of interesting plants and trees, especially selected to help with soaking up the rainwater.
The project cost £850,000. It is anticipated that it will remove approximately 4,365,000,000 litres of water a year from the sewer network. That is equivalent to almost 9 million bottles of drinking water!
Carmarthenshire County Council Executive Board Member for Technical Services, Cllr Colin Evans says: “The authority are very pleased to be working with Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water and other partners in delivering solutions to problems brought about by climate change; this scheme is innovative and a sustainable solution, one of a number required to meet challenges brought about by changes in our environment while also accommodating economic growth”.
Stebonheath School, Llanelli
Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water has invested almost £500,000 in a surface water removal scheme at Stebonheath School, which was constructed during the summer holidays in 2013.
This investment has transformed the primary school’s playground as it now incorporates a pond, a swale, planters, permeable paving, water butts and an outdoor educational area. These features will help absorb the surface water which currently runs straight off the playground into the sewer network.
The school children were heavily involved in the design of the scheme and participated in a workshop with the engineers where they input into how the playground should look.
This scheme will help to remove 3,000m3 a year from the sewer network – that is equivalent to 6 million bottles of drinking water!
Glevering Street / Swansea Road
This project is based around Glevering Street and Swansea Road where new drainage kerbs, grass channels and planters are being installed.
The work on this project started in September 2013 and it will be completed in May 2014.
This project is costing £2 million to construct and is anticipated to remove 22,558m3 a year from the sewer network, whilst also improving the environmental and aesthetic value of the area.
Mary Youell, from Natural Resources Wales, says: “This scheme is a fantastic demonstration of what our environment does for us. It is this kind of natural, sustainable solution for people in Llanelli that will benefit this community, the local economy and wildlife over the long term".