First Advisor

Heejun Chang

Date of Publication

Fall 1-2-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Geography






Urban runoff -- Mathematical models, Hydrologic models, Urban runoff -- Management, Flood control



Physical Description

1 online resource (v, 48 pages)


Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GSI) has become a popular method for flood mitigation as it can prevent runoff from entering streams during heavy precipitation. In this study, a recently developed neighborhood in Gresham, Oregon hosts a comparison of various GSI projects on runoff dynamics. The study site includes dispersed GSI (rain gardens, retention chambers, green streets) and centralized GSI (bioswales, detention ponds, detention pipes). For the 2017-2018 water year, hourly rainfall and observed discharge data is used to calibrate the EPA's Stormwater Management Model to simulate rainfall-runoff dynamics, achieving a Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency of 0.75 and Probability Bias statistic of 3.3%. A synthetic scenario analysis quantifies the impact of the study site GSI and compares dispersed and centralized arrangements. Each test was performed under four precipitation scenarios (of differing intensity and duration) for four metrics: runoff ratio, peak discharge, lag time, and flashiness. Design structure has significant impacts, reducing runoff ratio 10 to 20%, reducing peak discharge 26 to 68%, and reducing flashiness index 56 to 70%. There was a reverse impact on lag time, increasing it to 50 to 80%. Distributed GSI outperform centralized structures for all metrics, reducing runoff ratio 22 to 32%, reducing peak discharge 67 to 69%, increasing lag time 133 to 500%, and reducing flashiness index between 32 and 62%. This research serves as a basis for researchers and stormwater managers to understand potential impact of GSI on reducing runoff and downstream flooding in small urban watersheds with frequent rain.


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