Greater New Orleans Urban Water Plan wins two prizes

Published: 3 April 2015

Waggonner & Ball, Deltares and other Dutch and American partners have won two prizes with the Greater New Orleans Urban Water Plan. The plan provides for the coordinated management of rainwater, surface water, groundwater and land subsidence in the urban area of New Orleans.

Award for Master Planning & Urban Design

The first prize, the ‘Honor Award in Master Planning and Urban Design’, was granted by the New Orleans Chapter of the American Institutions of Architects. That prize is awarded to the urban plan in which architecture generates proven added value for the local area. So that local area was emphatically involved during the elaboration of the plan, with the urban water plan being integrated in the Louisiana Coastal Master Plan.

National Planning Excellence Award for 2015

In 2014, the same water plan had already been recognised by the American Planning Association. This year, the same organisation picked the Urban Water Plan as the winner of the prestigious National Planning Excellence Award for Environmental Planning. The jury commented: ‘the first regional water plan of its kind in the country’, ‘a vision with urgency and interest’, and ‘an elementary change in the region’s approach to water management’.

Roelof Stuurman and Frans van de Ven (both from Deltares): ‘Of course, we are happy with the recognition for the plan. The Deltares contribution related primarily to the approach for the urban water plan. Determining the water challenges in the area, the importance of the subsurface, the groundwater regime and the link to land subsidence. In addition, we also provided an analysis of the relationship between the water issues and the city’s socio-economic circumstances.’


Roelof Stuurman at work in New Orleans


Deltares was not the only Dutch organisation to be involved with the Urban Water Plan for Greater New Orleans. Delft University of Technology, the municipal authorities of Rotterdam and Amsterdam, and the consultancy firms Arcadis and RoyalHaskoningDHV also had contributions to make. In addition, the team included American and Dutch landscape architects (HNS, Bosch Slabbers, Palmbout, De Koning).