Flood and rainwater management: Tát-Tokod pilot project (EEA-C3-8) - Study Visit
[November 2016] The participants arrived on Wednesday morningto Tát City Hall to a warm local reception and opening remarks from Tát Mayor Lajos Turi and Tokod Mayor Tivadar Tóth. A thorough presentation from György Parragi, Technical Team Leader from the Tát Local Government, followed. His presentation included both a description of the challenges facing the region and steps taken to address them.
The primary water-related challenges for the municipalities have to do with inundation from extreme precipitation and seasonal flooding. Flooding in 2002 brought a near state of emergency to Tát, and the city has completed several works in recent years to finalise its flood protection scheme. Communities in the area are no strangers to water-related troubles, but it is generally acknowledged that climate change has a hand in the increasing regularity and severity of such incidents. Tát Municipality was awarded an EEA Grant of EUR 776,074, not only to improve protective infrastructure, but also to develop new planning methodologies, conduct impact assessments and aid decision-making capacity by formulating a list of priority investments.
“The area that we call the lower village is a very wet area, which is a physical challenge,” Parragi explained. “Another challenge was acquiring some areas in which to carry out project work because they were privately owned, which was a bureaucratic challenge.”
Following the project presentation, the participants visited three sites in the area. The first was to a small artificial reservoir within the settled area that accepts excess precipitation and groundwater from a concrete drainage channel. The next stop was atop one of two dikes that straddle either side of a flood-prone stream, the Unyi. Driving around the area, one sees an impressive network of raised earthworks to protect the region. Finally, the group went to the site of a groundwater and precipitation drainage unit near a block of flats. While it’s hard to tell how much work is involved after such a work is completed, the participants saw slides during the presentation earlier that showed how the unit was installed.
“One important lesson that we learned is that people are interested in changes above ground, such as road construction and repairs,” Parragi explained at the site. “But they seldom pay much attention to what takes place beneath the surface — for example, the effect that such work has on underground water levels.”
Thanks to the EEA Grants programme and the industriousness and dedication of local authorities, Tát and Tokod and a number of smaller communities in the region will benefit for years to come from the flood protection and adaptation measures that have been completed during the project period.