Rain is profit - Bydgoszcz boasts rain gardens

PILOT LOCATIONS: Bydgoszcz, Waterworks Museum and city hall building at ul. Grudziądzka 9-15. 

PILOT PARTNER: City of Bydgoszcz 

NATIONAL PARTNERInstitute for Sustainable Development Foundation 

LOCAL PARTNER: Bydgoszcz Municipal Waterworks Company


Raingarden at Waterworks Museum
For several weeks in Bydgoszcz, we have been happy about the new green and blue infrastructure created as part of the CWC Water cycle in the city project. A rain garden was created next to the historic palace on the premises of the Waterworks Museum, which is a pilot activity carried out as part of the project. The city established cooperation with the company Municipal Waterworks and a joint initiative led to the construction of a garden based on a previously prepared concept.



Photo: Jacek Cieściński

In the area of approx. 400 m2, the terrain was modified so that the plants planted in the basin and pots could be watered with rainwater from the roof. The building conditions of the palace and the near by area are ideal for demonstrating this type of solution. It is true that the building is under the care of the conservator of monuments, which forced the special needs of the project, e.g. the shape and material of the pot and barrels, but otherwise this solution is easy to apply to any other building. Thanks to the built moguls and stone streams, water can flow from the gutters into the garden, feed the plants and soak into the soil.

Bydgoszcz Pilot  4

Photo: Jacek Cieściński

From the other gutters, the water is collected into three barrels, instead of flowing into the rainwater channels. The surrounding green areas can also be watered with a hose and pump from the collected rain water. It is worth providing a few technical data to have an imaginative scale of operation. The area of the entire roof is 265 m2, the estimated amount of water from a single computational rainfall (local rainfall in Bydgoszcz) used to determine the capacity of rain gardens and the selection of barrels - 9.4 m3. The average annual amount of water from the roof of the rainfall layer for Bydgoszcz, reported by the Institute of Meteorology and Water Management, is 147 m3. Such an amount of rainwater will be "saved" thanks to the CWC project, and this is just the beginning of such activities in Bydgoszcz.

Involvement of the local communty

Bydgoszcz pilot 2

Photo: MWIK Bydgoszcz

The construction works were planned in such a way that the local community could engage in the activities at the last stage. On a nice autumn day, employees of the museum, city hall and volunteers listened to a lecture on the idea of rain gardens conducted by two employees of the Municipal Waterworks, Phd Jacek Cieścinski and Aleksandra Rajczyk, who were able to provide experience such a solution empirically. A nice touch was planting plants together, which in the number of over 200 plants will retain and purify rainwater. Hydyphophyte plants of about 30 species were selected, which are resistant to low temperatures, excessive humidity and the period of long-term drought. Rainy allies are:

  • loosestrife
  • knotweed
  • water mint
  • winter horsetail
  • and several species of beautifully flowering irises

The garden will develop its potential in the spring, when all the plants have established themselves and matured.

Bydgoszcz Pilot  5

Photo: Jacek Cieściński

An additional advantage will be the monitoring carried out in the garden. The devices and research results will be included in the educational activities carried out in the museum. Visitors will be able to see how little effort it takes to create a garden, use rainwater from the roof, and lower your drain bills for draining rainwater.

Another pilot will be built at the beginning of 2022 at the city hall building at ul. Grudziądzka. Pots with plants and benches for residents will be built here. Long gutters running through the entire building will attract the attention of passers-by with their strange shape. And the information boards will clearly explain why we collect water and how it does it.


Photo: Jacek Cieściński

Raingarden at city hall
The second rain garden was created as part of the CWC project - City Water Circles. This pilot project is located at the city hall building with offices and customer service, at ul. Grudziądzka 9-15. Perhaps its scope seems small, but we wanted this solution to be easily replicable. 

Raingarden in Bydgoszcz

The main objective of the pilot project is to collect rainwater from the roof of the building and deliver it through pipes to specially prepared pots. It is a so-called rain garden in an container. The excess water is transferred to the sewage system.

Community planting

Raingarden Bydgoszcz community planting


During the social campaign, in which the municipality employees and volunteers took part, over 170 hydrophilic plants were planted, which will purify and retain water. During this action, the garden contractor and the designer explained how the inside of the pot was prepared, what species of plants were selected and why they were used. It will be complemented by an information board that will easily provide instructions for making the garden to the residents. The location of the garden is well chosen, with a busy road nearby and a heat island area. A bench for residents, the pleasure of being among the plants, and lowering the temperature will certainly affect the quality of life in the city.

plants in Bydgoszcz

Raingarden Bydgoszcz plants


We are glad that the CWC project brings a new ecological quality to the everyday life of the city.

PPT presentations about the investment are available HERE and HERE   

Report of peer review visit in Bydgoszcz


Get closer to the raingardens by the video documentation

Bydgoszcz raingarden video 1


Bydgiszcz raingarden video2

Contact: Bozena Katarzyna Napierala, City Hall of Bydgoszcz, Department of Integrated Development and Environment,