The council would install ponds to temporarily collect water during intense storms and heavy rain that are more common in autumn and winter, alleviating the burden on the drainage network and reducing the risk of flash flooding. The scheme will also support ongoing rewilding efforts to create a sustainable green corridor from north to south of the borough.
Deputy leader Cllr Rezina Chowdhury, cabinet member for Sustainable Lambeth and Clean Air, said: “The proposed scheme are the latest example of the sort of innovative thinking required to address the serious challenges posed by the climate crisis.
“We have seen the devastating impact of extreme weather, storms, and record rain fall around the country over the last few years.
“The risk of flooding for many people, including those in Lambeth, remains very real and we need to do everything in our power to protect our communities.
“These proposals will help deal with excess rainwater, while adding more green spaces around St Matthew’s Estate to benefit everyone’s physical and mental health.”
Sustainable drainage can be introduced in different forms, from using permeable surfaces to control run-off, to planting more trees and establishing raingardens. Additional benefits of more greenery include more shade to combat extreme heat in the summertime and improving overall air quality.
The Council is working with Thames Water to deliver a £6 million programme of Sustainable urban Drainage Systems (SuDS), so the stormwater network does not become overwhelmed and cause surface flooding.
More than 30 schemes have already been earmarked for parks, streets, schools, and housing estates over the next three years.
The proposals for St Matthew’s Estate could be adopted at other housing estates in the future.
Cllr Chowdhury added: “Communities in Lambeth are already seeing the effects of a changing climate with extreme heat and heavy rainfall becoming far more common.
“We are planting more trees, enhancing green spaces, and using sustainable solutions to these significant challenges.
“I would ask those who live in or near St Matthews Estate to take our online survey, share their thoughts on our proposals and help us come up with a sustainable solution that will benefit everyone.”