Stormwater Permeability in the Waller Creek Watershed of Austin, TX

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Date

2015-12-04

Authors

Spencer, Robert

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University of Texas at Austin

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Description

The scope of this project will investigate the permeable land composition versus the urban development in the Waller Creek watershed (Figure 1) located in central Austin, TX. Waller Creek is roughly 5.64 square miles and includes a diversity of urban development types. The mile-long Waller Creek Flood Control Tunnel Project (Figure 2) is an ongoing project that is designed to remove more than 28 acres of downtown from the floodplain (City of Austin, 2015). This project reduces the impact of infrastructure flooding, but the volume of runoff into the surrounding natural water bodies has increased, bringing many unwanted pollutants with it. This investigation will serve as an aid to future city planners that want to determine the effectiveness and economic feasibility of different LID techniques in a particular watershed. The primary objective is to show how ArcGIS can be used as a tool to provide answers to the questions below and communicate these findings in making major development decisions. 1) What is the extent of impermeable land cover with urban development? 2) Which zoning districts are having the greatest impact on stormwater runoff? 3) Where could various LID techniques be implemented to achieve the best results while maintaining economic feasibility?

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