Infrastructure Minister announces Living With Water Programme Plan for Derry

Date published: 02 June 2021

Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon has announced new plans for drainage and wastewater for Derry

DfI Minister Nichola Mallon

A Strategic Drainage Infrastructure Plan for Derry, similar to the Belfast plan will be developed. During a visit to the Buncrana Road area the Minister also announced a pilot sustainable drainage scheme linked to the A2 Buncrana Road scheme. This follows the results of a recent study to investigate the opportunities to provide sustainable drainage solutions related to the design of the road scheme.

This will be part of the Living with Water Programme (LWWP) which seeks to revolutionise drainage and wastewater management with greener integrated solutions which coexist alongside hard engineering infrastructure such as bigger pipes and flood defences.

Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon said:

“The health and well-being of our citizens, our environment and our economy are dependent on effective water and sewerage services. Unfortunately, the existing drainage and wastewater infrastructure is becoming increasingly overwhelmed across the North, including Derry, and is in urgent need of modernisation.

“We have begun the LWWP in Belfast as an innovative solution to this which is better for our environment and our economy and I want to see this extended to Derry. I commissioned this study to identify possible sustainable drainage solutions that would not only meet the needs of the new Buncrana Road scheme but could provide wider benefits for this part of the city.

“The findings from the study clearly show that there is potential for considerable financial savings to the design of the road scheme by using this approach, as well as significant environmental and drainage benefits to the wider community.

“The LWWP is about using natural solutions such as open green spaces to naturally absorb surface water which will improve water quality in the rivers, reduce flood risk within the surrounding area, and reduce the amount of wastewater having to be treated at the treatment plants. Schemes can also be designed to aesthetically enhance the green spaces in the surrounding area to bring communities wider benefits such as active travel, health and amenity improvements. This is the type of sustainable infrastructure that will transform communities across the North now and for future generations.

“By working in partnership we can find the right solutions in the right places, to support our communities and we will continue to work with our partners to develop these ambitious but necessary plans.”

Notes to editors: 

  1. The Living With Water Programme seeks to revolutionise the way drainage and wastewater is managed in Northern Ireland by promoting greener catchment based solutions, such as sustainable drainage systems and river floodplain restoration works alongside the more conventional hard-engineered infrastructure, such as bigger pipes or higher flood defences. The programme for Belfast was recently consulted on. Details are here:
  2. DfI will work with partners in the city to develop the LWWP in Derry – partners include DCSDC, NI Water, DfC and the NI Housing Executive.
  3. All media queries should be directed to the Department for Infrastructure Press Office at:
  4.  The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.
  5. Follow the Department on Twitter @deptinfra and on Facebook @DepartmentforInfrastructure

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