Institute: Virgin Islands
Year Established: 2018 Start Date: 2018-03-01 End Date: 2019-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $42,847 Total Non-Federal Funds: Not available
Principal Investigators: Greg Guannel, Georgio Tachiev, Stevie Henry
Abstract: Virgin Islands residents, businesses and government properties regularly experience flooding during storms. This is unfortunate situation is the result of past planning decisions, and of a lack of knowledge of the complex watershed processes on the different islands. It is also due to the absence of an inventory of the drainage infrastructure, which often result in a lack of understanding of hydrologic connectivity between the different structures, but also between the structures and existing natural features. Here, we propose conduct the first ever geo-referenced inventory of the engineered drainage infrastructure in the Virgin Islands, and provide initial recommendations for stormwater system improvement in select locations. We will create a geodatabase of the engineered drainage structure by collecting, digitizing and geomapping existing infrastructure based on design and as-built documents. This database will be ground-truthed and augmented with information gathered during field survey efforts, using some of the latest survey methods and equipment. The geodatabase will then be used to create, and model the effectiveness of stormwater network systems in up to two select locations, under different climate scenarios. Results will provide insights on the types of improvements that might be considered to improve the stormwater system. Both the geodatabase and model inputs, approach and results will be shared with public agencies responsible for the design, permitting and maintenance of these systems, as well as the local emergency management agency. We will also provide training to some of these agencies staff to use and update the geodatabase, and to understand the basic concepts behind the modeling effort. The work proposed will create essential tools and provide a solid framework to help create a quick, safe and efficient drainage system in the Virgin Islands.