Electronic Journal of Polish Agricultural Universities (EJPAU) founded by all Polish Agriculture Universities presents original papers and review articles relevant to all aspects of agricultural sciences. It is target for persons working both in science and industry,regulatory agencies or teaching in agricultural sector. Covered by IFIS Publishing (Food Science and Technology Abstracts), ELSEVIER Science - Food Science and Technology Program, CAS USA (Chemical Abstracts), CABI Publishing UK and ALPSP (Association of Learned and Professional Society Publisher - full membership). Presented in the Master List of Thomson ISI.
Volume 22
Issue 3
Environmental Development
DOI:10.30825/5.ejpau.176.2019.22.2 , EJPAU 22(3), #01.
Available Online: http://www.ejpau.media.pl/volume22/issue3/art-01.html


Marta Szylar1, Katarzyna Cegielska1, Dawid Kudas2, Barbara Czesak1
1 Katedra Gospodarki Przestrzennej i Architektury Krajobrazu, Wydział Inżynierii Środowiska i Geodezji, Uniwersytet Rolniczy im. Hugona Kołłątaja w Krakowie, Poland
2 Katedra Geodezji, Wydział Inżynierii Środowiska i Geodezji, Uniwersytet Rolniczy im. Hugona Kołłątaja w Krakowie, Poland



The aim of this paper is an analysis if the provisions of development plans in the context of flood protection. Both crisis plans created for crisis management and local plans were analysed in QGIS software. Coverage and content of local development plan and land cover were analysed in details in flood risk areas. The results are presented in cartographic and tabular form. The study has shown the necessity for appropriate plans and programs supporting flood protection in Krakow. This is particularly important in urban areas with high population density and developmental pressure as in those areas the effects of floods would be particularly severe.

Key words: flood, local planning, crisis management, land coverage.


Nature influences human activity and development. Certain areas are particularly at risk of flooding, therefore they are difficult to live on. However, human beings can adapt to conditions on these areas and prevent the hazards or diminish their consequences. Actions needed to do so include: predicting natural hazards and risks, warning and evacuating people, rescue actions on sites of natural hazards, humanitarian aid, rebuilding destroyed areas [22], and above all – planning, organising and engineering that should help to prevent natural hazards [39]. One of frequent natural hazards in Poland, that are a real threat, are floods (Tab. 1). More than 2 mln ha of the surface area of Poland is endangered by different types and different extents of floods [13]. Floods are among most dangerous threats for lives and property [11]. The most common cause for floods are heavy rains [9].

Table 1. Average precipitation amounts at weather stations in catchments of Vistula tributaries north from Kraków from July 1997 and May 2010
Catchments of Vistula tributaries north from Kraków Average of maximal daily precipitation amounts at weather stations [mm]
in 1997
Average of maximal daily precipitation amounts at weather station [mm]
in 2010
Difference between averages
in 1997 and 2010 [mm]
Mała Wisła Catchment 89.980 132.930 44.95
Przemsza Catchment 79.075 49.675 -29.40
Soła Catchment 93.488 97.750 4.26
Skawa Catchment 74.870 101.230 26.37
Source: Based on Report after the flood from May and June 2010 Department of Safety and Crisis Management Kraków City Council, Section of Flood Protection

Floods were mentioned as early as in 10th century documents [41]. Towns such as Kazimierz, Ludwinów, Dębniki and Zakrzówek, before they administratively became a part of Kraków, were poorly populated, which was the effect of frequent floods and permeations [5]. Information on floods became more detailed and more studied with time. In the 20th century alone, there were over 30 big floods in the catchment of Vistula River. Flood of 2010 was the greatest observed in Kraków since 1813. It was more disastrous for the city than Central European flood of 1997 that is named the Millenium Flood (Tab. 1) [24].

Kraków is a city located by the largest river in Poland – Vistula river, was both a threat and a source of profits for the city for centuries [18]. Vistula was a trade path and communication path connecting Kraków with other towns in the river valley [42]. However, the location near the river has also its disadvantages. Overflow of Vistula River is caused by intensive precipitation, and in spring by cumulative influence of precipitation and melting snow in the mountains.

Historical observations and measurements show that floods in the area become more frequent [25]. It is caused by climate change and human activity. Studies show that not only precipitation but also the changes in land use and growing urbanisation increase the risk of floods [19]. Research conducted in many cities and agglomerations in the world confirm that accumulation of buildings and artificial surfaces leads to significant changes in hydrographic conditions and climate [3].

Currently over 50% of the world’s population lives in cities. According to the United Nations (UN) more than two thirds of big cities is threatened by negative phenomena caused by higher sea levels. During the next 30 years the number of people living in cities will increase which will cause increased threat of extreme floods and storms for millions of people [1]. Urban areas are particularly at risk of floods which is caused by the number of people living in the cities and high population density, many categories of business, utilities, high cost of real estate and accumulation of fixed assets of significant value [11, 21]. According to the European Environmental Agency, potential flood in Kraków may affect 10–15% of the city area [40].

Floods occurring in urban areas are a serious and continually rising challenge for local authorities, especially in the context of population increase, urbanisation trends and climate change. It is crucial to properly understand and more efficiently manage existent and future flood risk [8]. Therefore, it is important to create flood risk management plan, which may be a mean of diminishing the risk and overcoming its negative consequences [11]. According to Schanze [28] absolute flood protection is impossible. Instead of that, more attention should be put into new paradigm of risk management, which should be achieved by limiting the risk with various actions (from technical such as building levees or polders to so called soft actions such as proper preparation of inhabitants, managing information etc.) [10].

The aim of this study is to analyse provisions of crisis plans and local spatial plans related to preventing floods in Kraków and minimising their effects. Paper focuses also on determining the spatial extent of effective local spatial plans with special attention of flooded areas. Analysis was supplemented with an assessment of land development and land cover in flood prone areas. Characteristics of these areas are crucial for creating new flood management documents and evaluation of the existing ones.


Spatial analyses are necessary to research the areas at the risk of floods and to evaluate the their impact [15, 20, 26] First of the spatial analyses conducted during this research was delimitation of the areas that according to the Department of Security and Risk Management of the city of Kraków are at risk of century water and millennial water according to binding local development plans (data valid for 9/02/2016) [38]. Spatial analysis was based on maps available on the website of Public Information Bulletin of the city of Kraków [39]: map of flood risk areas, map of local spatial plans in Kraków. Raster flood risk map was converted into a vector map using a georeferecing based on 30 adjustment points. Adjustment points were in the vertices of the administrative boundaries of the analysed area. The most possible regular arrangement of adjustment points was assumed. As a result of the georeferencing process of the raster map ground pixel with 10 m size was obtained. After calibration, the map was digitised. Four vector thematic layers were made: areas at risk of floods, areas with effective local spatial plans, areas at which the local spatial plan is still being created, and a layer with districts of Kraków.

Map layers were compared with the provisions of the study of conditions and directions of spatial development (from now on referred to as study), binding local spatial plans, and for local planning the provisions of local plan of limiting the effects of floods and flood prevention for Kraków (from now on referred to as local plan) and assessment of the condition of flood precautions in Kraków (from now referred to as assessment).

Other sources used in the research are reports, programmes and publications describing and assessing both floods that occurred in Kraków in recent years and the measures taken. Based on the materials, spatial analyses were made, which in turn were used to determine the areas on which local spatial plan is necessary because of significant flood risk.

Moreover, the type of land cover was determined on the areas that do not have local spatial plan and are at risk of floods (the areas do not have precise rules for potential development). Chaotic construction works on this areas may cause great financial loses in case of natural hazard.

Analyses were made based on high resolution maps of development of big urban zones (over 100.000 inhabitants) and its surrounding (Urban Atlas for monitoring onshore areas – Fig. 1) [40]. For each urban area it is possible to download meta data with datum. The categories of land cover (Fig. 2) may be divided into two groups – natural land cover (waters, forests, green areas, agricultural areas etc.) and areas with artificial surfaces.

Fig. 1. Land cover types in Kraków

Fig. 2. Closer look at the part of the map showing land cover in Kraków
Source: map compiled based on European Environment Agency data

Artificial surfaces were divided into 4 categories of continuous and discontinuous urban tissue. Assigning a built-up area to one of the classes was depending on the share of sealing layer in the area [4]. Such a layer causes sealing of the soil and its degradation and leads to inevitable decrease of natural ability to absorb water (e.g. rainwater), which results in increased risk of flood in the area [36]. The analysis shows areas at risk of flood with no local spatial plan which allowed for determining the intensity of the development of the areas.  

The results of the research were presented in form of maps, tables and charts made with QGIS.


Crisis planning
Spatial planning and organizational actions are the basis for hazard management system [29]. Act on crisis management [32] defines crisis planning and enumerates tasks such as: optimal use of available forces and means, (...) taking actions during crises and reconstruction of infrastructure. It allows for preventing crises and preparing for actions that must be undertaken in case of an emergency. According to the act on local government [34] the authorities of Kraków (the mayor of the city) are bounded to perform public tasks for the municipalities, including flood protection. To do that, following documents were prepared: Crisis Management Plan for Kraków District and Urban Municipality of Kraków and Local plan to reduce the effects of flooding and flood prevention for Krakow [14]. Flood Risk Management Plan for Vistula River [27] is another strategic document that was adopted on the 18th of October 2016. Kraków located by the upper Vistula River is a high flood risk area, which poses risk to life, health, environment, cultural heritage, and businesses. Flood Risk Management Plan includes flood prevention, flood protection and flood preparation measures. The provisions of the plan are also incorporated  in spatial planning documents at community level, i.e. local spatial plans and studies of land use conditions and directions.

One of the most important aspects of flood protection in Kraków was for many years the construction of Kraków channel, called a “channel of relieve”. The idea to build a channel aroused in the beginning of 20th century after the flood in 1903.

Kraków channel was supposed to be a solution for many problems related to flood barriers of the city, particularly the city centre. It would protect Old Town, Debniki district, Podwawelskie district and Ruczaj district [31]. But when it was first planned (which was 100 years ago) the situation of the city was completely different. Nowadays, many negative effects of construction of the channel are emphasised such as: high cost of the construction and usage of the channel and related infrastructure, necessity to buy expensive properties for the construction, necessity to build embankments and other flood protection measures along the channel, decrease in the velocity of river flow of Vistula and in a result siltation of both rivers beds and necessity to assign areas for polders in the lower reaches of the channel, i.e. the place where the channel is reconnected with the river [6]. The discussion on the idea of building a channel took many years but then eventually the idea was abandoned because of the reasons mentioned above and the costs involved with such an investment.

In 1995 there was a conference: “Flood protection of the cities”, held in Kraków, during which flood protection was acknowledged to be one of the most important tasks of city authorities. But Local Emergency Plan was created only 5 years later, already after the great flood in 1997. The local crisis plan determines actions and tasks that should be performed by the city to protect Kraków from potential floods. It describes nontechnical actions (such as spatial development) and technical actions taken locally and in a larger area. Local emergency plan guidelines are general and are made only for the authorities of Kraków. Reports from local emergency plan [30] describe how the tasks should be executed. The efficiency of the anti-flood actions was verified in 2010 after another flood. It is easily noticeable that the expenses for flood protection increased only after 2010 (Fig. 3)

Fig. 3. A) Costs of renovation of dikes and Vistula Boulevards; B) Costs of construction of Swinna Poręba reservoir between 2005 and 2012
Source: based on Report from Local Plan

It cannot be concluded if earlier increase in expenses for redevelopment of Vistula embankments, construction of Świnna Poręba reservoir and Krakow channel, or redevelopment of barrages would prevent the consequences of the flood. As is emphasised by the report after the flood from May and June of 2010 [24] the precipitation that caused the flood were the most intense since 1813. Existing plans and procedures and the technical and organizational preparation of the crisis management services had great influence on the execution of operation tasks. In the conclusion from the report we read that the flood in May confirmed the provisions of local emergency plan. It was stressed that the district’s team of emergency management and all emergency services were well prepared. The actions of the teams were updated and practiced 8 months before the flood. Additionally, many remedial actions were identified that should be included in future emergency plans.

Spatial planning
To conduct integrated flood management during the flood, it is necessary to use a proper spatial planning apart from emergency planning. It is emphasised both by legislations and crisis management strategies. The act on spatial planning and development [33] binds authorities responsible for study of land use conditions and directions to include possible flood threat during the planning process. These provisions of local spatial plans must be accepted by the president of the regional water management board. Similarly, in local spatial plan it is obligatory to delimit the areas being at risk of flood.

While determining the aims and vision for the development of the city of Kraków [37], the most important aspect was accepted to be „integrity, protection and shaping of the most valuable parts of natural system”. It was emphasised that it is necessary to introduce flood protection on the areas at risk. Flood risk was recognized as a factor limiting the development of a city. Flood protection provisions were moreover included in the part of study of land use conditions and directions, in the compliance with development strategy of małopolskie province, and also in the description of problem areas at the borders of Kraków. Chapter on protection and shaping of the natural environment (directions of spatial development of Kraków) also includes flood protection provisions. There are some recommendations mentioned that result from the provisions of local crisis plan, they include a necessity to include floodplains in local spatial plan (Q1% areas with average flood risk – once per 100 years) and determining areas where building should be limited or completely prohibited.

This provisions are particularly important in big cities where developers’ pressure often causes building up floodplains [23]. It generates costs related to flood compensation and rebuilding.

In the Supreme Audit Office report – planning and investing on the areas at a high risk of a flood [35] it is said that actions taken by the President of Kraków which were supposed to increase safety at potential flooding areas were assessed positively. It is shown that there are provisions in the study of land use conditions and directions which determine areas at risk of flooding and actions that should be taken to prevent floods. It was noticed that local spatial plan prohibits building up areas at risk of flood and gives technical solutions for minimising damages.

Spatial analyses
Initial spatial analysis (Fig. 4) shows areas covered with currently binding local spatial plans and those that are still during the design process combined with the areas defined as being at a high risk of flood. Table 2 shows the area of floodplains in each district of the city and the cover of local spatial plans and their share in the area of floodplains in each district.

Fig. 4. Map of existing and being designed local spatial plans on floodplains in Kraków
Source: map compiled based on maps available on city of Kraków websites (www.bip.krakow.pl)

Table 2. Coverage of floodplans with existing and being designed local spatial plans in each district of Kraków
DISTRICT Floodplains Floodplains with local spatial plans Floodplains with local spatial plans that are being designed (without changes in existing plans) Floodplains with no local spatial plan
ha % of a district ha % of
flood-plain in a district
ha % of flood-plain
in a district
ha % of
flood-plain in a district
Bieńczyce 81.07 21.9 65.07 80.3 0.87 1.1 15.13 18.7
Bieżanów Prokocim 547.25 29.9 381.39 69.7 0.00 0.0 165.86 30.3
Bronowice 143.72 15.1 11.50 8.0 2.33 1.6 129.89 90.4
Czyżyny 776.79 63.2 549.93 70.8 50.40 6.5 176.46 22.7
Dębniki 1675.47 34.4 552.40 33.0 442.69 26.4 680.38 40.6
Grzegórzki 363.03 62.1 86.37 23.8 106.90 29.4 169.76 46.8
Krowodrza 259.81 48.0 68.88 26.5 57.89 22.3 133.04 51.2
Mistrzejowice 59.22 10.7 7.72 13.0 3.08 5.2 48.42 81.8
Nowa Huta 3234.31 48.5 887.66 27.4 6.52 0.2 2340.13 72.4
Podgórze 2108.90 83.7 1558.13 73.9 9.42 0.4 541.35 25.7
Prądnik Biały 87.32 3.7 54.80 62.8 0.00 0.0 32.52 37.2
Prądnik Czerwony 109.03 17.2 62.09 57.0 31.42 28.8 15.52 14.2
Stare Miasto 217.10 39.0 65.29 30.1 108.53 50.0 43.28 19.9
Swoszowice 24.97 1.0 24.97 100.0 0.00 0.0 0.00 0.0
Wzgórza Krzesławickie 23.58 1.0 9.23 39.2 0.00 0.0 14.35 60.8
Zwierzyniec 946.28 33.1 394.21 41.7 46.99 5.0 505.08 53.4
Source: Own data

After the analyses of the data, areas with highest risk of flooding were determined. The highest risk of flood is in Podgórze – almost 84% (over 2100 ha) is at risk of flood. However, it should be emphasised that almost three fourth of the area is covered by an effective local spatial plan. It is necessary to design local spatial plans for the remaining 25% of surface area of floodplains, i.e. for the areas between Lipska street and Bagry lake and in the eastern part of Mały Płaszów.

A large area of floodplains is located in Czyżyny and Grzegórzki districts – in both cases it covers more than 60% of the total area of a district. In Czyżyny the situation is better – local spatial plan covers 70% of floodplains areas, and additional plans are being designed for further 50 ha (Local spatial plan for Lema – Park Lotników area. Floodplains areas in Grzegórzki district are covered by local spatial plans only on 24% of the area (Local spatial plan for Bulwary Wisły and Cystersów areas).  A very positive thing is that local spatial plans are being constructed for almost 30% of the area (Local spatial plans for Ignacego Daszyńskiego avenue and Skrzatów street and for Lema – Staw Dąbski area). However, almost the half of the areas at risk of flood is still left with no local spatial plan. Those are the areas between railway tracks (on the west) and Powstania Warszawskiego Avenue and further to Fransesco Nullo street and to the south to Pokoju Avenue. According to the study of land use conditions and directions Those are mainly the areas of multi-family residential areas and land for commercial ventures.

Also in Nowa Huta district, there are large areas of floodplains that constitute almost  half of the area (more than 3200 ha). More than 70% of those areas is not covered by local spatial plan. The areas are not highly developed but lack of local spatial plans is particularly visible in the area of Klasztorna Street where single-family residences dominate the area.This area was affected by a flood in 2010. Klasztorna and Podbipięty Streets were mentioned in the Report as flooded because of automatically closed lock due to high water levels in dike foreland.

Large floodplains are located in Dębniki district (almost 35% of the area of the district). Over 40% (680 ha) of the district does not have a local spatial plan. Plans should be designed for residential areas between Kapelanka and Barska Streets and for the areas on south-east from Tyniecka Street. These are mainly the areas of multi-family residential housing and greenery (Skały Twardowskiego Park and Zakrzówek Reservoir). Designing local spatial plans for these areas will help protecting green areas which are valuable as a part of flood risk management system. Over 500 ha of floodplains without binding local spatial plans are located in Zwierzyniec district. Areas in northern part of Królowej Jadwigi Street are one and multi-family residential areas. Rudawa river is a threat for the inhabitants in case of levee failure or if the water passes over the crown of a levee. Also, the areas closer to the city centre between Krasińskiego Avenue on east, Kościuszko Street on south, Rudawa River on east and Focha Avenue on the north are at risk of flooding.

In the Old Town in Kraków floodplains with binding local spatial plan constitute only 30% of areas at risk. Local spatial plans are being constructed for 50% of the area (local spatial plans for Stradom and Kazimierz districts). It is necessary to create plans for areas between Trzech Wieszczów Avenue and Straszewskiego Street.

There are only in two districts with  no floodplains and these are: Podgórze Duchackie and Łagiewniki Borek Fałęcki.

Currently further local spatial plans are created on floodplains. An example can be the local spatial plan for the area near Koszykarska street [2]. The area is partly located as Q1% risk zone for a 100-year flood flow. Risk of a 1000-year flood is present on the whole analysed area [2]. The area was affected by the flood in 2010 after levee breach near Nowohucka street. Even though the area was then covered by binding local spatial plans (local spatial plans for Myśliwska and Trasa Nowopłaszowska areas) in which it was included as a countermeasures area, it is necessary to create a new plan.

Land use analysis (Fig. 5 ) shows that there are various developmental paths of flood risk areas. Water constituting to 5.89% of the surface area shows the scale of the problem. Favourable for flood protection is the share of natural green areas, including meadows, which is on the level of 48.32% of the whole area. The share of sealed urban tissue is 5.88%. The remaining categories which include non-continuous urban tissue contributed to 8.19% of floodplains. The share of the areas with unsealed soil such as agricultural areas, semi-natural areas, swamps, forests, urban green spaces, land without current use covered with vegetation is 56.76%. The total surface area of sealed areas is 37.35%. These areas include artificially sealed areas – continuous urban fabric and non-continuous urban fabric areas, transportation areas with related facilities, construction sites, sport and recreational areas, mining areas, dumping sites, industrial, service and commercial areas, public areas, military areas and private units.

Fig. 5. Land cover types in Kraków with floodplains and areas with no binding local spatial plan
Source: map compiled based on European Environment Agency data

Table 3 shows that higher share of sealed areas is on the floodplain areas without binding local spatial plans (% of surface area category). Higher percentage in the zones without local spatial plan may be a result of lack of proper planning rules. On the areas without binding local spatial plan there is 57.98% of continuous urban fabric, 49.29% of discontinuous dense urban fabric, 56.67% discontinuous medium density urban fabric, and 34.79% discontinuous low density urban fabric. The share of green spaces is two times lower in zones without local spatial plan.

Table 3. Land cover types in floodplains
Total surface area [ha] % of total surface area With local spatial plan With no local spatial plan
Surface area [ha] % floodplain surface area % of surface area of the type Surface area [ha] % floodplain surface area % of surface area of the type
Continuous Urban Fabric
(S.L. > 80%)
613.822 5.88 257.912 2.47 42.02 355.910 3.41 57.98
Discontinuous Dense
Urban Fabric
(S.L. 50–80%)
786.564 7.53 398.901 3.82 50.71 387.663 3.71 49.29
Discontinuous Medium Density
Urban Fabric
(S.L. 30–50%)
67.503 0.65 29.247 0.28 43.33 38.256 0.37 56.67
Discontinuous Low Density
Urban Fabric
(S.L. 10–30%)
1.239 0.01 0.808 0.01 65.21 0.431 0.00 34.79
Construction sites 30.027 0.29 13.349 0.13 44.46 16.678 0.16 55.54
Industrial, commercial, public,
and private units
1423.188 13.62 982.599 9.41 69.04 440.589 4.22 30.96
Fast transit roads
and associated land
7.154 0.07 4.804 0.05 67.15 2.350 0.02 32.85
Railways and associated land 34.644 0.33 8.475 0.08 24.46 26.169 0.25 75.54
Other roads
and associated land
385.150 3.69 197.615 1.89 51.31 187.535 1.80 48.69
Mineral extraction
and dump sites
67.039 0.64 1.892 0.02 2.82 65.147 0.62 97.18
Land without current use 38.703 0.37 32.318 0.31 83.50 6.385 0.06 16.50
Isolated Structures 61.029 0.58 21.911 0.21 35.90 39.118 0.37 64.10
Sports and leisure facilities 424.227 4.06 289.583 2.77 68.26 134.644 1.29 31.74
Green urban areas 469.399 4.49 286.748 2.74 61.09 182.651 1.75 38.91
Agricultural + Semi-natural
areas + Wetlands
5048.070 48.32 1833.824 17.55 36.33 3214.246 30.77 63.67
Forests 373.359 3.57 129.851 1.24 34.78 243.508 2.33 65.22
Water bodies 615.151 5.89 309.081 2.96 50.24 306.070 2.93 49.76
Source: Own data

For floodplains without local spatial plan, the share of the areas with unsealed soil is 64.58% and for areas with artificially sealed soil it is 30%. Water covers 5.42% of the area. For floodplains with local spatial plan it is respectively 47.57% for unsealed areas, 45.99% for sealed and 6.44% of water. The share of natural areas in the surface area of floodplains with no local spatial plan can be perceived as positive, however, new local spatial plans should be more focused on the protection of green areas.

Soil has many functions from being a basic resource for farming and forestry and food industry, fabric production, wood production, filtering the water, limiting the frequency of floods and droughts, fostering biodiversity and supporting climate regulation on regional and local level [17]. Sealing of soil increases surface flow, decreases water infiltration coefficient and evaporation [36]. Development results in soil sealing, therefore it is not recommended in floodplains. Despite that it happens quite often that floodplains, i.e. natural areas able to store water and limit the risk of floods are often being built-up.


Flood in 2010 showed that Kraków was not ready for such natural hazard. Despite having previous experiences from 1997 the city was not ready for another flood. Precipitation in May of 2010 in Kraków were 4 times higher than the standard precipitation [7]. We need to remember that getting ready for the flood takes years and that previous actions can protect the city and its inhabitants from tragedy in the future.

16 out of 18 districts of Kraków are at  risk of flood. In Podgórze it is almost 84% of the surface area of the district, and in Grzegórzki as well as Czyżyny it’s over 60%. The areas at risk of flooding cover more than 30% of surface areas in another 6 districts. In total they cover more than 10 500 ha in Kraków. Only almost 46% out of this area has a binding local spatial plan. New plans are being currently prepared for 8% of the area. Almost half of the area at risk of flood has no local spatial plan or local spatial plan in preparation.Drawing plans is necessary both for built-up areas to protect existing buildings and limit the consequences of natural hazards and for undeveloped land to maintain green spaces being natural floodplains and limit future development of the areas. It is important to include in local spatial plans provisions concerning potential threats to diminish flood risk and its negative consequences with responsible spatial policy.

Counteracting sealing of the soil is particularly important in this realm. Binding local spatial plans should regulate waterproof surfaces (such as bitumen or concrete) of areas at risk as this kind of cover limits the amount of rainwater which can be absorbed by the soil. Currently in most cities there is excess of waterproof surfaces which leads to lack of filtration of rain water. Therefore, rain water does not add to groundwater, aquifer, underground watercourses thus creating new paths, which leads to surface runoff and overflow of sewerage [17]. European Commission notes that we can restrict sealing of the soil by „restriction of taking over terrains and a rate at which natural areas are urbanised as well as continuing to seal soils but only in areas urbanised previously. One of the most certain ways to restrict sealing of the soils is creating realistic aims of taking over terrains at national, regional and local levels [17].

Creation of Local Plan is a positive aspect. Even though this plan is very general for anti-flood policy, it is still a good basis for further actions and creation of additional legislations. An example of this can be releasing of building permits or deciding to localise investments of public aim. If a given area is not covered by a local plan, then investors are informed about a flood risk when given such permits or decisions

Obeying law, investing in flood defences and controlling as well as updating current solutions are crucial for proper protection of areas at a high risk of floods. Integrating local plans and crisis plans will help to act efficiently and smoothly in case of recurrence of floods.


This Research was financed by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Republic of Poland, projects No. BM - 2325/KGPiAK/2018


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Received: 1.08.2017
Reviewed: 6.09.2018
Accepted: 24.06.2019

Marta Szylar
Katedra Gospodarki Przestrzennej i Architektury Krajobrazu, Wydział Inżynierii Środowiska i Geodezji, Uniwersytet Rolniczy im. Hugona Kołłątaja w Krakowie, Poland
Balicka 253c
30-149 Kraków
email: szylarmarta.kgpiak@gmail.com

Katarzyna Cegielska
Katedra Gospodarki Przestrzennej i Architektury Krajobrazu, Wydział Inżynierii Środowiska i Geodezji, Uniwersytet Rolniczy im. Hugona Kołłątaja w Krakowie, Poland
Balicka 253c
30-149 Kraków
email: cegielska_katarzyna@wp.pl

Dawid Kudas
Katedra Geodezji, Wydział Inżynierii Środowiska i Geodezji, Uniwersytet Rolniczy im. Hugona Kołłątaja w Krakowie, Poland
Balicka 253c
30-149 Kraków
email: d.kudas@ur.krakow.pl

Barbara Czesak
Katedra Gospodarki Przestrzennej i Architektury Krajobrazu, Wydział Inżynierii Środowiska i Geodezji, Uniwersytet Rolniczy im. Hugona Kołłątaja w Krakowie, Poland
Balicka 253c
30-149 Kraków
email: b.czesak@ur.krakow.pl

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