Urban Water Plan: New Orleans, LA

Client: Greater New Orleans Development Foundation

Summary: The Urban Water Plan project addresses a large urban area encompassing the East Bank of the Mississippi River in the New Orleans Metropolitan Area, including four water management areas: East Bank of Orleans Parish west of the Industrial Canal, New Orleans East, East Bank of Jefferson Parish, and St. Bernard Parish. All of these areas experience severe damage from Hurricanes Katrina and Gustav. Through GNO, Inc., grants are funding a comprehensive look at water in the region, including flooding caused by rainfall, soil subsidence caused by pumping of stormwater and groundwater, water quality, economic development, and urban design results of the grey infrastructure that exists and continues to be seen as a solution.

As a key consultant on the team, Dana Brown & Associates, Inc. developed an innovative study on the “Ecological Services Metrics of Stormwater BMPs” which addressed analysis and design of small stormwater management interventions in ten land cover typologies, applying them to the entire project study area, and aggregating data on the ecological benefits. This was the basis for determining BMPs that was incorporated into the overall Urban Water Plan. Dana Brown & Associates, Inc. also designed strategies for retrofitting existing canals and street cross-sections, in addition to having designed to schematic design levels a number of small areas that served as pilot projects.

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