by Q Xiao, EG McPherson, JR Simpson, SL Ustin

Hydrological Processes 21(16): 2174-2188


The authors cite evidence of previous research indicating that population and economic growth increased urbanization, thereby increasing urban water resource management problems. In California, polluted runoff, winter flooding, and summer water shortages are critical problems that challenge planners and managers. This study aimed to develop, calibrate, validate, and apply a physically-based hydrologic model at the residential scale for simulating runoff to street and landscape irrigation water use. This model simulates hydraulic processes among different Best Management Practices (BMPs) and land cover types in both long (annual) and short (storm event) time frames. There is an increased interest in controlling storm runoff at the source (parcel-level) as a better alternative to a centralized strategy. The numerical model described in this study can support better decision-making by allowing users to compare the effectiveness of different BMPs on parcels of any size and location. In the case of Los Angeles, the driveway interceptor was the most effective BMP for storm runoff reduction (65%), followed by the rain gutter installation (28%), and lawn retention basin (12%). Soil testing is also an essential step in selecting the most appropriate BMP.

Region: Los Angeles, California
Publication Type: Journal article
Keywords: land cover, rainfall interception, and water-use efficiency