Bank of Actions

Bank of Actions

Are you seeking examples or inspiration for water protection? There are plenty of potential actions to choose from! The Bank of Actions will provide your organisation with concrete ideas and examples of water protection activities implemented by organisations in the Baltic Sea Challenge network. You can browse these according to the theme, type of actor, country, year or keyword.

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Sustainable storm water management through biofiltration

Actor: City of Helsinki   ●   Year: 2015   ●   Address: Metsäläntie 2, Helsinki, Finland

© Kaisa Rosqvist / CITYWATER, Helsingin kaupungin ympäristökeskusA sustainable storm water management solution based on biofiltration was realised in Maunulanpuisto Park in Helsinki, in order to purify rainwater and meltwater and improve water quality in the Haaganpuro Brook.


Rainwater and meltwater collected in drains from a lively trafficked drainage area are channelled to a sedimentation basin, in which a large part of the solids sinks to the bottom. The water then continues its journey to the biofiltration area where it is allowed to pool, giving vegetation time to bind nutrients and heavy metals. After this, the water slowly permeates the filtrating sandy layers under the vegetation, during which harmful substances are absorbed by microbiological activity. Finally, the purified water is fed into the ditch via a drainpipe and onwards into the Haaganpuro brook.


© Kaisa Rosqvist / CITYWATER, Helsingin kaupungin ympäristökeskusAs the drainage area is heavily trafficked and paved with asphalt, high solid, nutrient and oil levels have occasionally been measured in the rainwater and meltwater entering the Haaganpuro brook. Such contamination is harmful to the fish stocks (e.g. trout) and other organisms in the brook. The biofiltration solution is the first of its kind in Helsinki. In connection to the solution, an info board describing the objectives and functionality of the solution as well as the general challenges that cities face regarding storm waters and their management (increasing rainfall and condensed urban structures) was erected in order to inform local residents on the issue.

Background information

The sustainable storm water solution was implemented within the EU LIFE+ financed CITYWATER- Benchmarking water protection in cities project. The objective of the project (2012-2015) was to facilitate and implement ambitious water protection measures. The solution also supports the City of Helsinki storm water strategy, which aims at changing management towards sustainable solutions and states that storm water should in first hand be infiltrated on spot, where it is created.

Further information

Name: Kajsa Rosqvist   ●  Email: kajsa.rosqvist (a)   ●  Web page: