Again financers and city planners met with the teams responsible for sketching out transformative Water as Leverage projects in three Asian cities Semarang (Indonesia), Chennai (India) and Khulna (Bangladesh) in Singapore. This time to fine-tune the projects.

The three-day workshop, that took place from 23 to 25 April, got the financers and city planners engaged in the final detailing of the projects to make them bankable, balancing between a creative approach and avoiding unnecessary risks.

Water as Leverage aims to help leapfrog Asian cities towards climate resilience by delivering on the integration of grey, green or blue infrastructure, making the cities more liveable.

Final details

Started in July last year, six expert teams have been working on transformative water projects in three Asian cities. Twice the teams held consultations with local stakeholders in the three cities and on one occasion the teams had the opportunity to present their projects to financers.

This time the teams met with financers and city planners to show their latest project updates and to discuss the implementation in more detail.

Clear pathways

"Singapore proved again a necessary step in project preparation´, commented Dutch water envoy Henk Ovink as chair of the programme’s advisory board. ‘We sketched out clear pathways for all opportunities in all three cities."

According to Ovink a roadmap is now defined for each city, including aspects such as ‘governance’, to help ensure that this comprehensive approach is sustained. "We have identified what needs to be done, who does what, how can we organise it and when the results can be delivered", he said.

Ovink noted that every single financial partner present said the same thing: "We’ve never seen this before!".


With these road maps the Water as Leverage projects enter the last stage of preparation: the ultimate buy-in at national, provincial and, of course, city level for the project proposals.
The programme recognises water’s connecting and interdependent strength and sees it as an opportunity. Water can be a leverage for impactful and catalytic change to make climate adaptation happen.

The Water as leverage projects aim to find solutions to the complex water issues in cities. This process is an important element of the whole programme as it brings together the existing capacities of different disciplines conducive to climate adaptation. It creates an enabling environment combined with an interdisciplinary approach in which all aspects come together, including financing. This approach is an example for all Asian cities to speed up the implementation of climate adaptation plans.

Six teams

The six teams involved, are:

  • in Chennai, India
  1. team Rising Waters, Raising Futures
    with Deltares, IGCS, IIT Madras, Care Earth Trust, CUDi (Center for Urban Design Innovation, Karlsruhe Institute for Technology, Waggonner & Ball, Benthem Crouwel Architects, Arcadis and VanderSat.
  2. team City of 1.000 Tanks
    with OOZE VOF, Madras Terrace, Goethe Institut, Ramakrishnan Venkatesh, Vanessa Peter, IHE Delft, Rain Centre, Care Earth Trust, Paper Man, Pitchandikulam, IIT Madras, TU Delft, HKV.


  • in Semarang
  1. team One Resilient Semarang: Water(shed) as Leverage
    with One Architecture & Urbanism, Inc, Deltares, Wetlands International, Kota Kita, Sherwood Design Engineers, Hysteria Grobak, Iqbal Reza, UNDIP.
  2. team Cascading Semarang - Steps to inclusive growth
    with MLA+, Stichting Deltares, FABRICations, PT Witteveen+Bos Indonesia, UNDIP, UNISSULA, IDN Liveable Cities.


  • in Khulna, Bangladesh
  1. team Creating inclusive and natural water synergies in Khulna urban region
    with Euroconsult Mott MacDonald B.V., Khulna University of Engineering & Technology, Urban and Regional Planning (KUET-URP).
  2. team Khulna as a Water Inclusive City
    with CDR International, Defacto Ubranism, Nelen en Schuurmans, DevConsultant, Khulna University, RoyalHaskoningDHV, Wageningen University and Research.
This news item was originally published on the website of Water as Leverage