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Why flood is the #1 issue for your development

Considering a site’s flood opportunities and constraints is vital on any development. Flood + Land Principal Emma Clements shares her top tips on flood considerations for your  development, and how to respect waterways while maximising yield.

How can flood affect a development? Why is it a vital consideration on every project?

It can be the difference between a site working well, being compromised (which can reduce returns) or in some instances, not working at all.

Brisbane is virtually built on a floodplain. When the rains come, the creek/river waters rise up through our streets and the local runoff roars through our properties – both can cause devastation. This has been witnessed time and time again.


Any tips on what developers need to look out for in relation to flood? 

First, check out the council’s flood mapping – this will provide any known flood data from nearby waterways.

Next, check out local and nearby stormwater infrastructure. Big pipes running through the site generally means there’s a lot of water travelling through or near your property.

As engineers, we can then advise if flood is a deal breaker, or find an innovative solution that ensures your project can move forward.


How can developers respect local topography and maximise their yield at the same time?

Understand where the water is coming from. Is it from nearby creeks/waterways? Is the local stormwater infrastructure at capacity?

Consider how much extra runoff your development will create and where you will direct this water.

Be up to date with the local policies and guidelines. With climate change and infill development on the rise, the authorities are constantly updating their flood data and policies.

We make it our business to keep in tune with these policies, so we can better represent our clients and our waterways simultaneously.