At the occasion of the WTC, UN Habitat held a meeting of its new expert group on Drainage. The main aims of the EGM will be to engage international experts to explore innovative development and management of urban drainage options and the requisite strategies to enable improved and resilient cities for the future. These will be achieved through the following specific objective:
· Mapping: to comprehensively outline approaches and stakeholders to innovative urban drainage design and development practices, and identify the potential niche for UN-Habitat’s engagement in an action plan;
· Underground space: to raise awareness of underground space and tunnelling for adequate urban drainage management and to enable transfer of models for public participation in planning, implementing and operating stormwater management systems e.g. through north-south or south-south twinning arrangements;
· Disaster risk management: to develop standards and guidelines for effective urban drainage and reduction of risk, particularly in informal settlements;
· Urban planning: to present robust and flexible urban drainage systems, as an integral part of urban planning to respond to a range of global change pressures;
· Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SuDS): To support options (and applicability) for ecological-based systems in developed and developing countries;
· Financing: to outline financing prerequisites and possible options to secure funding support for urban drainage systems.
ITA is actively participating in this group, bringing the skill of tunnelling and underground experts to propose the use of underground space when appropriate fror drainage.
At this occasion ITA and UN Habitat signed a Memorandum of Understanding, which aim is to facilitate cooperation between UN-Habitat and ITA to raise awareness of underground space and tunnelling for adequate urban drainage management, city planning, and sustainable mobility solutions among decision-makers and local authorities. The area of collaboration between UN-Habitat and ITA is to raise awareness of underground space and tunnelling for adequate urban drainage management, city planning, and sustainable mobility solutions. The target audience are decision-makers, local authorities as well as UN-Habitat to transmit benefits, advantages and financing opportunities of underground space and tunnelling for sustainable urban development, resilient cities and disaster risk reduction.