About LIFE UrbanAdapt

LIFE Urban Adapt is working on:

  1. An increased risk of flooding due to intensive rainfall and rising sea water levels.
  2. Elevated temperatures caused by the urban heat island effect (UHI). 
  3. Damage to flora and fauna on land and in water.


Our climate is changing. As a world port city in the Dutch delta, Rotterdam will notice the effects of this. The sea level is rising, which will eventually have consequences for the safety of our dykes. River discharges will become more extreme, increasing the risk of flooding and thus increasing the risk of casualties and (economic) damage. Very intensive rain showers will also occur more often, which the current sewer system can no longer handle and that will lead to water on the streets and other nuisances. At the same time, the chance of prolonged periods of drought and heat increases, which can affect the liveability of the city.
Rotterdam is a forerunner in the field of climate adaptation and in 2001 was the first major European city with an EU-approved climate strategy. The elaboration of this strategy is already visible in several small-scale public locations, such as the water squares.
From 2013, the Rotterdam Adaptation Strategy (RAS) will chart the course along which we will adapt to climate change. Implementation of measures in the city is progressing steadily, but in order to make great strides, climate adaptation must be integrated on a larger scale. This requires commitment not only from the municipality, but also from residents, companies and other social organisations.


To protect the European economy and society from the negative effects of climate change, the EU is looking for sustainable solutions that can contribute to this. That is why the importance of urban adaptation strategies is high on the European policy agenda. Rotterdam is known as a front runner in the field of climate adaptation and was the first major European city with an established adaptation strategy. This complex process requires good cooperation with all relevant stakeholders, where mutual interests are sought and found to implement effective climate adaptation measures together. LIFE Urban Adapt wants to show the potential of this participatory approach for implementing urban climate adaptation strategies and measures. Click here for more information about the European LIFE program.


Rotterdam Urban Nature in Open Rotterdam

August 4, 2023

Keilehavenpark The Urbanists have been commissioned to create a water park in the Keilehaven. The M4H area in Delfshaven is in full development. The harbor basin in the Keilehaven is being transformed into a tidal park. In the coming years, the river banks of the Nieuwe Waterweg and the Nieuwe Maas will be greened to provide space for tidal nature…

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Ecology Keilehaven

June 21, 2023

From our ecologist Madeleine den Hartog Last week, the Keilehaven project won the PROVADA award. In addition to sustainability and circularity, underwater nature is also an important element in this project. The first ecological baseline measurement that was carried out already showed a few interesting fish species such as flounder, eel, pike-perch and houting. The wooding is…

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Tidal park Keilehaven winner PROVADA Inspiration Award 2023!

June 19, 2023

The Inspiration Project Award is for a team or collaboration that looks at the impact of the project on sustainability, quality of life and the environment with a solid long-term vision. The Award went to Keilehaven Rotterdam Tide Park, a development by the Urbanists, commissioned by the municipality of Rotterdam. A city park combined with tides is quite unique…

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Urban Land Institute case study with Nassauhaven and Heliport

May 1, 2023

The Urban Land Institute has published a study on waterfront parks, which includes Nassauhaven and Heliport. Parks that protect highlights pioneering waterfront park projects designed to protect their neighborhoods from climate threats while improving residents' health and quality of life. In communities all over…

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Knowledge exchange LIFE CLIMCOOP

May 1, 2023

On April 25, we received a visit from the LIFE-CLIMCOOP project from Hungary. They visited the LIFE Urban Adapt and LIFE@Urban Roofs projects in Rotterdam for knowledge exchange and to learn from each other. The overall goal of the LIFE-CLIMCOOP project is to develop, test and demonstrate collective actions between a city government and a multinational to…

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Inspiration and network day urban wet nature as a climate solution

April 19, 2023

On April 18, 2023, Natuurpunt Beheer Vlaanderen organized an inspiration day with the LIFE project Wetlands4cities in Mechelen. The inspiration day provided insight into some examples of nature-oriented climate solutions in and around cities in Flanders and the Netherlands. The positive effects of wet nature for water buffering, infiltration, cooling, CO2 capture and mental well-being in and around…

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