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Open AccessArticle

A Simple GIS-Based Model for Urban Rainstorm Inundation Simulation

School of Environmental and Geographical Sciences, Shanghai Normal University, Shanghai 200234, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(10), 2830;
Received: 5 April 2019 / Revised: 26 April 2019 / Accepted: 13 May 2019 / Published: 17 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Future Cities: Urban Planning, Infrastructure and Sustainability)
With rapid urbanization, floods that occur are more frequently associated with non-riverine, urban flooding. Reliable and efficient simulation of rainstorm inundation in an urban environment is profound for risk analysis and sustainable development. Although sophisticated hydrodynamic models are now available to simulate the urban flooding processes with a high accuracy, the complexity and heavy computation requirement render these models difficult to apply. Moreover, a large number of input data describing the complex urban underlying surfaces is required to setup the models, which are typically unavailable in reality. In this paper, a simple and efficient urban rainstorm inundation simulation method, named URIS, was developed based on a geographic information system (GIS) with limited input data. The URIS method is a simplified distributed hydrological model, integrating three components of the soil conservation service (SCS) module, surface flow module, and drainage flow module. Cumulative rainfall-runoff, output from the SCS model, feeds the surface flow model, while the drainage flow module is an important waterlogging mitigation measure. The central urban area of Shanghai in China was selected as a study case to calibrate and verify the method. It was demonstrated that the URIS is capable of characterizing the spatiotemporal dynamic processes of urban inundation and drainage under a range of scenarios, such as different rainstorm patterns with varying return periods and different alterations of drainage diameters. URIS is therefore characterized with high efficiency, reasonable data input, and low hardware requirements and should be an alternative to hydrodynamic models. It is useful for urgent urban flood inundation estimation and is applicable for other cities in supporting emergency rescue and sustainable urban planning. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban flooding; rainstorm; SCS model; GIS; distributed simulation urban flooding; rainstorm; SCS model; GIS; distributed simulation
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Meng, X.; Zhang, M.; Wen, J.; Du, S.; Xu, H.; Wang, L.; Yang, Y. A Simple GIS-Based Model for Urban Rainstorm Inundation Simulation. Sustainability 2019, 11, 2830.

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