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Field Report

ENCIV3030 & ETCIV3110 – Water & Drainage Infrastructure

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The drainage system is very important infrastructure to collect waste and stormwater from urban areas. A good and effective design of a drainage system is very important, but this has been affected by changes in climate hence difficult to design an effective functioning drainage system (Huong 2013). Water quality has increased as a result of the variety of pollutants and nutrients in receiving water masses. In today’s drainage systems focus on water quality, ecological protection that lead to aquatic environment protection and wider recognition of sustainability. A sustainable drainage system should ensure decentralized techniques that reduce adverse effects on non-point source pollution. A good urban design should ensure a clean ecosystem that support clean water and facilitate clean environment (Chocat 2007)

The scope of this report is to evaluate urban designs used in Canada lakes. This includes establishing water sensitive urban design components that aim at ensuring a sustainable drainage system. It also explains possible maintenance issues and how to manage water quality and quantity.

Canadian Lakes Drainage Design Philosophy

Its drainage design focuses on storm water watermanagement system. Its design aims at reducing water impact on surrounding aim to reduce effects caused by storm water such as soil erosion, silt in drainage ways and other pollution problems in the water ways (Semadeni 2008) Unlike other old drainage water philosophy it has considered water sensitive urban design (WSUD) which include slowing water and allow it to absorb in water and treating storm water from pollutants. WSUD elements used include grass buffer strips, grass swales, wetlands and sedimentation (Leopold 1968).

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Figure showing drainage design system and components master plan for Canadian lakes

Description of design components and their objectives

The Canadian lakes have used different design components that include:

Grass swales

hey are used to slow the speed of water to allow water filter out some of the pollutants and transferring water to an underground system by use of trenches or some perforated pipes.

Grass swale


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Buffer strip

It’s an area with permanent vegetation to control soil and water quality. Ithelp in filtration and stabilize banks against erosion and landslides as sediments are stuck in this area during run off.

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Bio-retention swales,

They are elements to remove silt and have gently sloped slides to tap pollutants and silt. They are present in parking lots and release water to storm sewer.

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Grated pits

They semi-permeable to allow water to provide water pass to subsoil and allow filtration of some materials

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The main aim of planting vegetation is the interception, storage and filtration of water. In case of floods, storm water is they reduce water run off hence reducing flood risk

The design components shown above are very essential in managing an effective drainage system. Materials used include grated pits that enable water to be filtered and absorbed to the sub soil. Vegetation is an essential element as apart from reducing effects of water during floods it absorbs some pollutants in water hence cleaning water and ensuring good air circulation. Underground drainage sewers reduce collusion on the ground that reducing erosion.

These components were used rather than the traditional methods because traditional systems water was drained quickly to underground and have population has increased surface that water was to be absorbed buildings have been built .this has let lot water in run off and less absorption of pollutants done.

Technical comments and management issues.

There were problems in connecting house drainage that drains from high to low sides .also due to hydraulic conductivity it was assumed that swales designed are impermeable. In designing the WSUD, it was not economical to elevate roads on bends as much of bulk earth works is Canadian lake in sourcing of material for hydraulic conductivity was a problem hence opted fabric textile with the top layer of sand (lersen 1997)

In management removal of sedimentation in WSUD especially in areas of low runoff but this was overcome by placing of hay bales at point where enter WSUD. As indicated it was difficult to match subsoil drainage to storm water pits and also depth of sewer pipes.

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Decreased of aquatic ecosystem health is as the result of poor drainage in urban centers and poor engineering practice. Good urban design can result to integrated urban drainage design and urban planning hence good management of water resources. WSUD construction has increased in great degree increased water management. They involve many disciplines, and many tend to prioritize them in decision making, but it remains a challenge in taking the task to reality due to many problems e.g. finding matching materials.


Chocat, B.; Ashley, R.; Marsalek, J.; Matos, M.R.; Rauch, W.; Schilling, W.; Urbonas, B.Towardthe sustainable management of urban storm-water. Indoor Built Environ. 2007, 16, 273–285.

Larsen, T.A.; Gujer, W. The concept of sustainable urban water management. Water Sci. Technol.1997, 35, 3–10.

Huong, H.T.L.; Pathirana, A. Urbanization and climate change impacts on future urban flooding inCan Tho City, Vietnam. Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci. 2013, 17, 379–394.

4. Leopold, L.B. Hydrology for Urban Land Planning—A Guidebook on the Hydrologic Effects ofUrban Land Use. In Geological Survey Circular 554; U.S. Geological Survey: Washington, DC, USA, 1968.

5. Semadeni-Davies, A.; Hernebring, C.; Svensson, G.; Gustafsson, L.G. The impacts of climate change and urbanization on drainage in Helsingborg, Sweden: Suburban storm water. J. Hydrol.2008, 350, 114–125