Development of a simplified urban water balance model (WABILA)

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

During the last decade, water sensitive urban design (WSUD) has become more and more accepted. However, there is not any simple tool or option available to evaluate the influence of these measures on the local water balance. To counteract the impact of new settlements, planners focus on mitigating increases in runoff through installation of infiltration systems. This leads to an increasing non-natural groundwater recharge and decreased evapotranspiration. Simple software tools which evaluate or simulate the effect of WSUD on the local water balance are still needed. The authors developed a tool named WABILA (Wasserbilanz) that could support planners for optimal WSUD. WABILA is an easy-to-use planning tool that is based on simplified regression functions for established measures and land covers. Results show that WSUD has to be site-specific, based on climate conditions and the natural water balance.

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