Resilient Urban Centres and Surrounds (RUCaS)

Canal linear Park
Vientiane, Lao PDR


Canals in the downtown area of Vientiane


Canal in Vientiane


Canal linear Park field survey map

Situated along the Mekong River, Vientiane has many canals that work between the river and historical cultural wetlands.

These wetlands and canals – many following natural drainage lines – are under pressure, degraded by urbanisation processes, with catchments and waterways suffering from encroachment, pollution, incomplete or poor infrastructure, waste dumping and upstream clearing. For example, the canals that feed into That Luang Marsh – a natural feature revered for its cultural and ecological value – are under severe pressure from Vientiane’s expanding special economic zone.

Canals in the Wattay catchment, north of the airport, are less developed and retain some natural features, yet also suffer from pluvial flooding events and incomplete drainage. This project looks at rehabilitating drains and canals, incorporating NbS initiatives to create functioning linear parks that deliver multiple benefits for local communities and the city at large. ‘Access for all’ will be a feature of linear parks that link green space throughout the city.

The project will retain and improve access to healthy waterways for local residents, supporting their food security, livelihoods and recreation. This will include understanding how canals and wetlands support and extend women’s food security and income options.


What does a Water Sensitive City look like?

The CRCWSC has produced research, guidelines and
tools related to the following topics:

Integrated Urban Flood

Climate change


Economics and
business case

Flood resilience
Green Infrastructure
Urban heat