Smart City Update from Bærum: Sustainable stormwater management through innovative partnerships

Due to climate change and the increase of impermeable surfaces more stormwater is produced. Currently, most of the stormwater is caught in the urban sewerage system. During heavy rainfall the capacity of these systems can be exceeded and the municipality of Bærum is looking for new solutions in order to cope with this challenge.

The most significant ongoing project in the municipality with emphasis on stormwater management is an innovation partnership, an innovative procurement, between the municipality and the industry. For this project the municipality of Bærum has signed a collaboration agreement with Innovation Norway, the National Program for Supplier Development, and the Norwegian Digitalisation Agency. The municipality of Lørenskog is a cooperative partner in the project. A private supplier will have the opportunity to develop a new, innovative, and forward-looking solution for stormwater management in densified suburbs.

After a thorough needs description Bærum concluded that the innovative partnership will be dedicated to the development of a decision-making tool/software and associated work processes. Stormwater management is interdisciplinary, and the aim is to develop a tool that will facilitate this. Different nature-based solutions will be important inputs to the development of a stormwater management tool.

7 corporate consortiums have bid on the tender, and the winner will be announced in June 2021, followed by a development phase for 1,5 years in order to develop an innovative decision-making tool for stormwater management. Several other municipalities have shown interest in the project and will be able to buy the product without further tender competition.  


Bærum is among the biggest municipalities in Norway and delivers a wide range of services to its citizens. The department of Water and Sanitation is responsible for distribution of drinking water, from water source to the household. The department is also responsible for handling the sewage from the community, until purified and released to the fjord of Oslo, and has a responsibility for stormwater management.

Bærum municipality's infrastructure consists of more than 530 km of water pipes, 530 km of wastewater pipes and 375 km of stormwater pipes. The main strategy for handling stormwater is the three-way strategy: infiltration, delay and safe discharge of stormwater.