Integrated urban flood design in the United States and the Netherlands

F.L. Hooimeijer, Y. Yoshida, A. Bortolotti, Luca Iuorio

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeChapterScientificpeer-review

1023 Downloads (Pure)


Spatial design integrates social, cultural, economic, and political perspectives with natural site conditions and man-made construction to plan for sustainable urban development. The current flood-risk-related challenges induced by climate change place pressure on designing cities in which both natural and man-made conditions can be imbalanced. Creating a purely engineered line of flood defense to restore this balance does not always work. The idea of living more closely with water includes the discipline of spatial design more into flood risk management than the current dominant paradigm. Following the probability approach defined as risk = probability × consequences, the current Dutch paradigm is focused on reducing the probability with dikes; the United States focuses on reduction of consequences by evacuation and recovery. This chapter focuses on urban design and planning strategies for reducing flood risk not just by a flood defense line such as a dike, but also reducing risk by means of urban development behind the dike. Integrated urban flood design must integrate site-built environment characteristics and natural systems, and simultaneously solve challenges posed by hazards. Effective design, therefore, must be conducted on the basis of hydraulic engineering knowledge, leading to spatial designs that introduce resilient urban qualities. Two cases for this approach are presented and compared: Vlissingen, the Netherlands and Galveston, Texas, United States.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCoastal Flood Risk Reduction
Subtitle of host publicationThe Netherlands and the U.S. Upper Texas Coast
EditorsSamuel Brody, Yoonjeong Lee, Baukje Kothuis
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9780323852517
ISBN (Print)9780323852524
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository 'You share, we take care!' - Taverne project
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • Integrated urban flood design
  • Delta landscapes
  • Spatial design
  • Flood defenses
  • Flushing
  • Flood protection


Dive into the research topics of 'Integrated urban flood design in the United States and the Netherlands'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this