UDON THANI, THAILAND
GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE MASTER PLAN
Udon Thani is a city in northeast Thailand covering an area of 47 km2, and the tenth largest urban agglomeration in Thailand with a population of 160,000 people. As a provincial capital, it is projected to grow 20% by 2030 according to UN statistics, becoming an important economic and strategic gateway to Indochina.
Seasonal monsoon storms cause flooding that has increasingly severe negative economic and social impacts due to higher levels of rainfall.
The severity of these flooding events are compounded by faster rates of urbanization.
The main goal of the Green Infrastructure Master Plan for Udon Thani, was to develop a master plan document, that not only would provide the development of new public spaces for the people of the city, but also could propose effective sustainable solutions to help mitigate and reduce flood and drought risk.
The project approach developed and designed a green infrastructure master plan that includes green solutions like linear parks, retention basins/parks, wetland parks, and green streets.
The scientific study that led to the development of the green infrastructure master plan was integrated within a broader conceptual bottom-up decision-making process. It included three workshops with the city’s main stakeholders to assess the general problem statement and determine which strategies must be systematically tested.
The team for the Green Infrastructure Master Plan for Udon Thani was multidisciplinary in its approach and included landscape architects, planners, geoscientists and water resource engineers. We identified a total of 14 green infrastructure projects for the city that would have a scientifically-measured impact for mitigating flood in the city.
The key for success was the integration of landscape architecture, urban planning and water resource engineering with hydraulic modeling to visualize benefits and evaluate performance in a collaborative framework.
This project is to serve as a case study for urban resiliency in Southeast Asia and act as a catalyst for developing a vision based on sustainable flood mitigation strategies in response to climate change.
In 2019, the government of Thailand provided funding to Udon Thani municipality for the implementation of the Green Infrastructure Master Plan project. It is currently under development.
Green infrastructure could be considered, among other things, a significant economic, social and health improvement for all the people living in urban areas.