Thousands of homes and businesses will face the threat of tidal flooding and a £1 billion damage bill by 2110 if nothing is done to protect Southampton from rising sea levels.

Over the past five years AECOM has been working with Southampton City Council to improve flood resilience across the city – an integral part in supporting regeneration and reconnecting the community with its historic waterfront.

We delivered the award-winning Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Strategy in 2012 which outlines preferred management options to ensure Southampton will be better protected from tidal flooding for years to come. These options combine measures such as flood walls, land raising and property level protection and community resilience that can be delivered in phased packages of work. Through integration with the council’s planning policies these schemes will also support the city’s urban regeneration aspirations.

An initial scheme delivering property level protection has already been completed. We undertook flood modelling, surveys and ground investigations to inform delivery of a scheme providing better protection to 40 flood-prone homes.

We’re now working on plans for a major 4km tidal flood alleviation scheme on the west bank of the River Itchen. Through integrating flood risk management with land use planning, the scheme will be delivered using partnership funding including developer contributions and Local Enterprise Partnership funding. Once the funding plan is agreed and the scheme is built, it will protect over 1,100 homes and 600 businesses.