Dublin Beta Projects

A Dublin City Council live mechanism for imagining, testing and implementing ways to improve the experience of life in the Capital.

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Rain Box Planters


Status: Live

Current Status: Ongoing

Project Stage(s): Concept

Live Trial Location(s): Removed

(What are the Project Stages?)
(Why are trials removed?)


Dublin City Council has policies in place for new developments to reduce the amount of rainwater entering sewers. However, we also need to look at existing buildings to see where we can make improvements. 


This Beta Project looked at whether we can green streets and better manage rainwater coming from people’s roofs by exploring the idea of ‘Rain Box Planters’. 


11 households took part in this trial of 6 Rain Box Planters. We spoke to the residents before the trial and agreed the terms with them. (Initially 1 planter was installed, we reviewed how it had worked, then another 2 were installed at the same first location a month or so later, then the final 3 were installed at the second location a few months later still.) 

These two locations were chosen due to their residential nature, both combined gave a mix of social and private housing tenures, their proximity to the relevant Dublin City Council staff members, because neither locations had narrow footpaths nor had very high footfall, and finally because Gray Square has experienced some minor flooding in the past.

The trial was left in place for 18 and 24 months (varies between the two locations).


This trial cost Dublin City Council €1,350. 

The planter boxes attenuated rainwater as expected. Visual inspections of the planter boxes during rainfall appear to show that they attenuated rainwater until they reached their saturation point. 

The plants have generally survived and thrived, and the solution appears to have been popular with the residents who directly took part in the trial, and also their wider neighbours. They didn't cause any anti-social behaviour or outcomes, and the feedback received would seem to indicate that residents feel that it had a positive effect on their immediate neighbourhood. 

Report Card:  Rain Box Planters, Iteration 1



There is a need to create a further iteration of this project at a larger scale, to enable us to accurately measure the rate at which they slow rainwater entering our drains, which in turn may also enable us to place a monetary value on the solution.

(What are the possible project outcomes?)


A second iteration of this project will be developed.


If you think you might like to trial a rain box in the future, please signup here!




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