The integration of swales in residential areas involves significant urban development challenges. The space available for the collection of excess rainwater is often restricted. As a result a swale must be relatively deep, which means that the sides are often steep. This can create a hazardous situation and makes maintenance difficult, leading to regular problems when the swale becomes overgrown with weeds or blocked with litter. Furthermore, the capacity gradually decreases due to a layer of silt accumulating over time, hindering the infiltration of the water into the soil.
Additionally, traditional swales can only be used for the purpose for which they are intended: the collection of rainwater during heavy showers. The surface is then no longer usable for any other purpose.
New usage opportunities
With Rockflow, a swale acquires new usage opportunities. The design is based on an existing swale design, in which only the infiltration medium is replaced by Rockflow. By installing Rockflow underneath a swale the swale itself becomes shallow enough to allow easy maintenance with a regular mower. Because the gradient of the swale with Rockflow is no steeper than 1:3, there is no obstacle to mowing. In addition, a swale with Rockflow has a flat and load-bearing base (VOSB 18 / 30) making it suitable for use as a park or functional green space. Occasional recreational use is also possible.
Heel (Sterplein), the Netherlands