Successfull kick-off of 'Weerbaar Dommelland'

On Thursday, June 20th, the kickoff for the Weerbaar Dommelland project took place at Dommelhof in Pelt. This initiative is part of the Interreg Flanders-Netherlands subsidy program. Around 50 partners, stakeholders, and interested parties gathered to explore the vision and objectives of the project.

Weerbaar Dommelland | 20/06/2024

Weerbaar Dommelland 2000 x 1250 px


After a warm welcome from Liesbeth Fransen (Alderman of Pelt), Jos Lantmeeters (Chairman of the Maasbekken Board, Flanders) and Saskia Boelema (Deputy of the Province of North Brabant, Netherlands) started with an introductory speech about the necessity of a cross-border approach for a resilient Dommelland. Subsequently, the project leaders from the Province of North Brabant and the Flanders Environment Agency explained the structure and setup of the project. Weerbaar Dommelland is structured around three work packages: management of the Dommel watercourse; restoration of the sponge landscape in the source area (of Dommel and Warmbeek/Tongelreep); and climate-adaptive design of the built environment.

Various actions were explained in more detail. For instance, the Flanders Environment Agency focuses on river restoration of the Dommel and optimization of the detention basin in Pelt, the City of Peer restores sponge landscapes, and the municipality of Eindhoven focuses on the implementation of climate-resilient measures in Genneper Parken, a landscape park south of Eindhoven.

There are, of course, more actions and partners! In total, there are 8 partners in Flanders and the Netherlands executing the project from March 2023 to February 2027. All directors and deputy representatives were invited on stage to officially inaugurate the start, with each representing a piece of the puzzle!

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Networking and Inspiration Moment

The kickoff event also provided an opportunity for partners, stakeholders, and interested parties to exchange ideas about the project. During the break, three information stands were available. With the virtual reality glasses from Museum Eindhoven, attendees could take a digital walk through the future museum, which will have a climate-resilient green roof developed within the project. At the Interreg networking stand, stakeholders could seek inspiration and explanations about whether this subsidy program could be interesting for them. Additionally, the short film 'Portrait of a River – Dommel' by Graham Steel, recently made in collaboration with Water Board De Dommel, was shown for extra inspiration.

Excursion in Pelt

After all the speeches and presentations, an excursion was arranged to the recently redesigned Market Square and the nearby Church Square in Pelt. This allowed participants to form a “before” and “after” idea of how Church Square can be made more climate-adaptive by integrating blue-green elements in an urban environment.

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The kickoff event concluded with a cozy reception. Weerbaar Dommelland marks the beginning of a new cross-border collaboration towards greater regional resilience.

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