The Garden Guide

Book: Landscape Planning and Environmental Impact Design: from EIA to EID
Chapter: Chapter 5 Reservoir planning and design

Urban water storage reservoirs

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Urban reservoirs have been neglected from a landscape planning point of view. Most of them are not in areas of high scenic quality and it was thought they could do little visual harm. Their potential for improving the urban landscape was totally ignored [Fig 5.13]. Many date from the period when engineers prevented all access to all reservoirs because of the imagined pollution risk. But the water is fully treated after being stored, and since it has been abstracted from severely polluted rivers, it is evident that any extra pollution caused by public access can impose little additional load on the treatment plant. When sufficient treatment capacity is available, the prospects for landscape development are dramatic, especially in London. Water supply engineers, as always, are against it.