Madeline Wright (Civil/Environmental Engineer, Christchurch) & Chris Harré (Civil Engineer, Auckland) both attended this year’s annual NZ Stormwater Conference held from the 18th – 20th May at Nelsons Rutherford Hotel. The conference was attended by 329 delegates from all parts of the country. The main theme at this year’s conference was ‘Resilient Stormwater Systems’ in recognition of recent significant rainfall events across New Zealand and the ever increasing hazards presented from these events.
A variety of interesting topics were presented at the conference with 72 papers highlighting some important key issues around “Stormwater Resilience” and the implementation of robust systems that could assist future proof communities against ever increasing natural hazards and disasters resulting from stormwater.
The final day of the conference presented the opportunity to attend various site tours allowing delegates the opportunity to view some local examples of stormwater projects first hand. Both Maddy and Chris attended the Nelson – Richmond – Mapua Site Visit which included the following:
- A visit to a local subdivision where low impact design was utilised (there was also an opportunity to hear from the developer) and then passed through the Richmond Town centre where a total reshape (stop flooding of shops) will start in the next 12 months.
- A visit to Borck Creek which was widened from 4m to 55m incorporating a range of environmental enhancements.
- A visit to Mapua where the coast is threatened by erosion (sea level rise), and saw the various coastal protection works that have been used to in an attempt to mitigate erosion of the foreshore.
Overall the Stormwater Conference was found to be both interesting and beneficial to Maddy and Chris, providing them with the collaboration of various experiences from like-minded professionals in relation to resilient stormwater systems. The experiences and knowledge gained from this conference will prove beneficial to our future projects involving stormwater.