Integrated modeling of urban water systems


To improve integrated urban drainage modeling, including the integration of the modeling of stormwater runoff, stormwater infiltration, groundwater and subsurface drainage, sewer hydraulics and open channel flow.

The project includes research into

  • the functioning of several popular SUDS in the Netherlands,
  • the improvement of the models to simulate SUDS’ functioning,
  • the improvement of the modeling of slow- and fast flows in urban drainage;
  • development of an integrated simulation model.

Popular SUDS in the Netherlands are green roofs, vegetated filtration swales, porous pavement, underground infiltration crates and IT-DT sewers – these are porous pipe stormwater sewers, allowing for Infiltration, Drainage and Transport of stormwater.

Field studies are underway to monitor and quantify the rainfall-runoff behavior of these facilities in practice. This leads to improved models to simulate rainfall-runoff relations of urban districts.

Another wicked problem in the integrated modeling of urban storm drainage is the integration of the fast-flowing surface and sewer runoff processes and the much more slow response via infiltration facilities and urban groundwater. Both pathways should be combined with care, in order to keep the water balance closed.


  • HSJ article
  • Leon Valkenburg
  • Erik Donkers
  • Mahsa Amirjani
  • Cheng