Urban Water Agenda


Why an Urban Water Agenda 2030?

"Water is one of the fundamental things for life. Sustainable water management is also one of the key themes for cities. Tallinn always aims to do better and tries to go further than is required by legislation. We are keen to work together with partners all over Europe."

Taavi Aas, Acting Mayor of Tallinn

Tallinn at work | Reconstruction of a water course in Tallinn

In order to protect River Pirita a section of Lepiku water course situated in the Botanical Garden of Tallinn was renewed. The original construction had collapsed , the bottom and the culverts were full of sediments and in many places the soil had eroded. Following the new construction, parts of the old construction were removed. All stumps on the right side of the water course were erased, while roots were left as a natural barrier for erosion. Secondly, all the sediments from the bottom were excavated and culverts were cleaned and replaced where needed. After that, elements for the new water course were built up: At first a fabric suitable for the purpose was placed on the bottom and sides of the water course and on top of it gravel as well as limestone were spread out to construct the right slope, width and high. On the upper side of the course, a geocell was placed and filled with soil to avoid erosion. Along the watercourse, width and depth are constructed to vary in order to retain the water flow thus improving sedimentation of suspended material. Further, plants will be added along the coarse both on the bottom and sides.

Additionally to the objective of purifying the storm water running through the Botanical Garden, is the project's also aims to show citizens that a water course in their yard may be a privilege. Instead of directing water into a pipe system, water elements diversify nature and bring recreational values to the area.

Interested in finding out more? You can read more about the project following this link, or contacting the leading specialist in Tallinn Environmental Department, Silver Riige (silver.riige[at]tallinnlv.ee).

Reconstruction of a section of the water course in the Botanical Garden in Tallinn

Tallinn's member of the UWA2030 Core Group

Märt Holtsmann (Head of Environmental Management Division in Tallinn Environment Department)

Märt Holtsmann has 15 years of experience in Water and Nature Conservation in Tallinn City.


Quick facts on Tallinn

Location within country

Tallinn is located on the northern coast of Estonia, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland. The main river crossing Tallinn is Pirita.

Number of inhabitants

445,480 (2017)

Main economic sectors

- Financial services
- Information technology
- Service industry

Source/s of water supply

Lake Ülemiste and groundwater

Main utilities providing water and waste water services

- AS Tallinna Vesi
- Tehnovõrkude Ehituse OÜ
- Esmar Vesi OÜ

More information: www.tallinn.ee

Updated: September 2017