Predicting and presenting urban pluvial flooding

                                                              

Predicting and presenting urban pluvial flooding

FIDIC
Solution proposed by: 
Antea Group
In a Nutshell: 
We have optimized predictions of urban pluvial flooding and its consequences by the use of different data sources. By comparing the predictions with real life events, the model will be fine-tuned, increasing the ability to predict how rainwater flows to lower areas. The model results are being presented in 3D.
Where and When: 
Haaften, 2015 and Elspeet, 2015-2016 (Netherlands)
Challenges: 
The climate is changing. Summer precipitation and the intensity of rainshowers will increase. This, combined with the increasing amount of impenetrable surfaces in urban areas, causes an increase of the risk of urban pluvial flooding. Besides, we need to create awareness of climate change for politicians, board members, civil servants and citizens.Our challenge is not only to predict urban pluvial flooding, but also to present the consequences and act towards it. Understanding today, to improve tomorrow!
Innovation: 
In the Netherlands, climate change causes an increase of extreme precipitation events in summer. This, combined with the increasing amount of impenetrable surfaces in urban areas, causes an increased risk of urban pluvial flooding. Besides threatening our safety and comfort, these incidents cause material damages and financial losses. We have different methods, not only to predict flooding but also to weigh risks, costs and benefits. By developing these methods and models we can better understand, predict and act towards preventing urban pluvial flooding. This gained knowledge is used in the design and (re)construction of public spaces and new cities.
Description: 
To understand, predict and act towards urban pluvial flooding incidents a solid analysis is needed. Usually the first insights are gained through a one-dimensional sewer drainage model. However, when flooding incidents have taken place, it is difficult to determine which factors have had a role in the occurrence of this event. The 1D model has its limitations in determining these factors, mainly because it does not take in account the surface runoff that occurs at these periods of heavy precipitation. Therefore a surface runoff model has been developed. This model uses the national DEM (digital elevation model) data, height of pipes and buildings, soil types with their different permeation and the different land use types which shows the surface flow directions. New software and data-analyses enable the possibilities of two-dimensional modelling. With open data and the links between a sewer drainage model, a water model and a surface runoff model results are getting closer to real world situations. As a result, one integral model is available, arising from the different fields of expertise. Comparing the modelled results with measurements during real life events help calibrate the model, for even more reliable results. The model is further verified using observations of inhabitants (from social media). We want to further develop the model with our colleagues and partners, using different data sources that are widely available. The results from the integral model have been presented in a three-dimensional environment, by using layers that are used in the different models. ArcGIS is used to add these together, creating the 3D images. With these images, we create awareness of climate change. The 3D model can function as basis for communication towards consultants, civil servants, politicians, citizens and other stakeholders, to better understand, predict and act towards urban pluvial flooding.
Impacts: 
The impact of our approach and presenting urban pluvial flooding is the creation of awareness of climate. Not only for consultants or civil servants, but also for board members and citizens. This gained knowledge and understanding is used in the design and (re)construction of public spaces and new cities. Furthermore, other topics related to climate change are brought under attention, like the urban heat island effect. Combining and weighing measurements is made possible.

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