Hurricane Sandy (2012) had far-reaching consequences for New York. Beyond the tragic casualties, Sandy disrupted many services, e.g. public transport, electricity and telecom – shutting down much of lower Manhattan, incl. Wall Street and several hospitals. Such an event shows the cascade effects one event can have on a larger system, and how sub-systems and functions of a city are interconnected.
Growing urban populations and climate change have increased cities’ vulnerability to disasters, and their impact. RCI is essential to prepare and recover from this. In a resilient city, “the show must go on”, under all conditions, even right after a disaster. Cities should safeguard undisrupted public services. This means their public infrastructure (transport, tunnels, water, and electricity), but also hospitals and other public assets, should be resilient. This affects public and private stakeholders, as a city is an integral system. The resilient solution lies in integrated RCI in city planning, ensuring business continuity and undisrupted services by working together across all scales. Through RCI, cities ensure the safety and wellbeing of their inhabitants.
Wuhan is a megacity in the middle reaches of the Yangtze river. Water is the core power of Wuhan’s urban development and an important pathway to global cities, but the water ecological environment is also extremely sensitive. Under the background of rapid urbanization and industrialization, the city begins to face the problem of aggravated water environment pollution and frequent waterlogging. In order to solve the water problem systematically and do a good job in water management, Wuhan began to promote the construction of sponge city in 2015 and explored water control samples in megacities and the symbiotic blue-green infrastructure for cities.
Through the preparation of Wuhan sponge city special plan, the city space structure, ecological system, rain flood system, and other series of blue-green planning are taken into full account. With the implementation of blue-green infrastructure in the urban area, the appearance and interactivity with residents has increased, making water treatment projects as important landscape signs and characteristic public space, and making sponge city construction a participated urban construction method by the citizens
Zhuhai, one of EC-Link’s pilot cities, has experienced significant growth in the last three decades. With a coastline stretching 690 km, the city is exposed to high risks of extreme weather disasters such as typhoon, heavy rain storm and floods. These threats were epitomised by Typhoon Hato (August 2017), which inflicted direct economic losses exceeding 20 billion yuan on the city. To protect the city, Zhuhai seeks to identify the best practices of water management and urban resilience governance. Under the request of Zhuhai Housing and Urban Planning Development, the Europe-China Eco-Cities Link (EC-Link) project has piloted resilient city solutions in Zhuhai.
World Waternet, Palmbout Urban Landscapes, Zhuhai Housing and Urban Planning Development, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit