Category: Planning & Management

397857 - Looking Beyond Opportunity: Prioritizing GSI siting through GIS modeling

Tuesday, Jun 5
8:30 AM – 5:30 PM

The implementation of Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GSI) continues to grow, particularly in urban centers, and is a more holistic stormwater management alternative to expanding “grey” infrastructure. GSI as a stormwater management tactic can be less costly, improve watershed quality and enhance the landscape aesthetics of a community. Often, GSI project siting is based entirely on the availability of open space and a willing land owner, without considering characteristics of the land itself. Looking beyond land opportunity for siting projects can provide a strategy for maximizing GSI potential performance and help to prioritize project development efforts. A Geographic Information Systems (GIS) weighted model, based on factors such as land use, parcel size, hydrologic soil group classification, slope, and others, can identify potential GSI project sites, tailored to the priorities of any GSI initiative. This GSI model can guide the siting of projects and optimize the implementation efforts to install more effective GSI in the most appropriate areas, based on the factors used to create the model and the weighted importance of each factor. The GSI siting model can be particularly informative in more densely-developed, urban areas where open, unprogrammed or undeveloped space, typically targeted for most GSI projects, is very limited. The GSI model is flexible and can be altered as initiative goals and project budgets shift and change.

Co-Authors: Robert Ryan, Temple University – College of Engineering

Erin Ramsden

Graduate Research Assistant
Temple University, Center for Sustainable Communities
Ambler, Pennsylvania

Robert J. Ryan

Associate Professor
Temple University
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania