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.


Climate adaptation in ZOHO – video

October 19, 2021

In the inner-city area of ZoHo, the climate adaptation activities are as good as finalized. It has led to beautiful results, that will also be used for the area development of other parts of Rotterdam. In this video you can see more about the collaboration in ZoHo, the results and the future plans.

watch the video

Tidal parks in the Maas – video

September 19, 2021

Now that the Nassauhaven has been transformed into a tidal bank, the lessons learned will be applied in the Keilehaven and incorporated into the climate adaptive area development of other parts of Rotterdam along the Maas. See how we do it in this video.

watch the video

Blueprint: lessons about the LIFE Urban Adapt sub-projects

April 25, 2021

For the sub-projects on river tidal parks, there has been a lot of collaboration with partners such as ARK and the government. For the projects at ZoHo, residents and partners were the driving force behind the climate-adaptive projects. What does and did the participatory approach of those subprojects look like? Who were the stakeholders exactly? How and when do you involve those stakeholders in…

read more

Climate adaptation in sewerage plan for the municipality of Rotterdam

April 2, 2021

The new sewerage plan of the Municipality of Rotterdam has the following theme: 'from pipe to outdoor space'. “It means that we set up the outside in such a way that we can process precipitation without flooding,” explains Michel Bunt, water and sewerage advisor at the Municipality of Rotterdam. “A combination in which we keep our feet dry with all kinds of measures. With an important role…

read more

Strengthening the underwater nature in Rotterdam

March 22, 2021

In Rotterdam, the Nieuwe Maas and the sea meet. That is why the port city is an essential area for migratory fish such as salmon, shellfish and special aquatic plants. With a variety of sometimes small measures, we can give these species even more space. The transition between river and sea creates special natural phenomena such as low tide…

read more

Heliport is green!

December 15, 2020

The Heliport Green project is ready! The inner courtyard has been transformed into a beautiful green, flowery and climate-proof area. Two years ago, the plan arose from a residents' initiative to replace part of the petrified courtyard with greenery. That was the impetus for a collaboration between residents, the municipality and the Schieland Water Board and the…

read more