Restoring Natural Infrastructure

Restoring Natural Infrastructure

Natural infrastructure provides invaluable functions and services to communities such as water quality, flood reduction, erosion protection, and habitat. Working with policy leaders, we work to overcome uncertainty and barriers to adoption of natural infrastructure for managing flooding, urban heat islands, eutrophication, and other risks. A particular focus is on resilient transportation systems including the restoration of degraded ecosystems and habitats in transportation corridors and mitigating the impacts of transportation systems on ecosystems and wildlife.

Restoring Natural Infrastructure

Natural infrastructure provides invaluable functions and services to communities such as water quality, flood reduction, erosion protection, and habitat. Working with policy leaders, we work to overcome uncertainty and barriers to adoption of natural infrastructure for managing flooding, urban heat islands, eutrophication, and other risks. A particular focus is on resilient transportation systems including the restoration of degraded ecosystems and habitats in transportation corridors and mitigating the impacts of transportation systems on ecosystems and wildlife.

Restoring Natural Infrastructure
Integrated Infrastructure Systems

Integrated Infrastructure Systems

Hybrid infrastructure aims to integrate conventional and natural (gray, green and blue) infrastructure solutions. The focus is on building community resiliency and the restoration of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Urban streams and drainage systems are designed that can safely absorb rainfall or runoff events within their future range of variability. These revived waterways can also provide other gains such as economic, social, and health benefits. Flood management strategies become part of a wider, integrated planning intended to achieve urban and environmental revitalization.

Sample Projects:

  • National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) : Guidance for Design Hydrology for Stream Restoration and Channel Stability provides written guidance and interactive tools to help hydraulic engineers assess the current conditions adjacent to a stream crossing and in the upstream watershed.
  • UWIN Hydrology and Hydraulics of Urban Floodplains: Seeks to better understand the interactions between flood flows and urban channels, floodplains and riparian zones as influenced by urban infrastructure and efforts to mitigate impacts of urban development, green infrastructure (GI), low impact development (LID), and sustainable urban drainage systems (SUDS) on flood response and other environmental consequences.

Integrated Infrastructure Systems

Hybrid infrastructure aims to integrate conventional and natural (gray, green and blue) infrastructure solutions. The focus is on building community resiliency and the restoration of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Urban streams and drainage systems are designed that can safely absorb rainfall or runoff events within their future range of variability. These revived waterways can also provide other gains such as economic, social, and health benefits. Flood management strategies become part of a wider, integrated planning intended to achieve urban and environmental revitalization.

Sample Projects:

  • National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) : Guidance for Design Hydrology for Stream Restoration and Channel Stability provides written guidance and interactive tools to help hydraulic engineers assess the current conditions adjacent to a stream crossing and in the upstream watershed.
  • UWIN Hydrology and Hydraulics of Urban Floodplains: Seeks to better understand the interactions between flood flows and urban channels, floodplains and riparian zones as influenced by urban infrastructure and efforts to mitigate impacts of urban development, green infrastructure (GI), low impact development (LID), and sustainable urban drainage systems (SUDS) on flood response and other environmental consequences.
Integrated Infrastructure Systems
Tools and Techniques

Tools and Techniques

Research examines system dynamics and develops models of infrastructure systems at various scales. Models examine the coupling of hybrid systems as a complex adaptive system of systems and applies ecological theory to these interconnection systems. Models also identify and reduce vulnerability in flood-water-energy systems and balances resource demands with the maintenance of ecosystem functions and services.

Tools and Techniques

Research examines system dynamics and develops models of infrastructure systems at various scales. Models examine the coupling of hybrid systems as a complex adaptive system of systems and applies ecological theory to these interconnection systems. Models also identify and reduce vulnerability in flood-water-energy systems and balances resource demands with the maintenance of ecosystem functions and services.

Tools and Techniques
Thriving Communities

Thriving Communities

Information about vulnerabilities and resilience are essential to the decision-making processes. IRIS develops visualizations for communicating future infrastructure to stakeholders and decision-makers and develops novel methods and tools to identify “low regret” infrastructure solutions. Further work examines how policy, law, and private standard-setting impact the development of resilient infrastructure.

Research also explores the impact of infrastructure on health and well-being. This includes improved accounting of the broader social, economic, and ecological benefits of natural infrastructure.

Thriving Communities

Information about vulnerabilities and resilience are essential to the decision-making processes. IRIS develops visualizations for communicating future infrastructure to stakeholders and decision-makers and develops novel methods and tools to identify “low regret” infrastructure solutions. Further work examines how policy, law, and private standard-setting impact the development of resilient infrastructure.

Research also explores the impact of infrastructure on health and well-being. This includes improved accounting of the broader social, economic, and ecological benefits of natural infrastructure.

Thriving Communities

GET TO KNOW IRIS

The Institute for Resilient Infrastructure provides a a meeting ground and network for discovering integrated infrastructure solutions (nature-based and conventional) that work together build societal resilience to floods, droughts, sea level rise, eutrophication and other disruptions.

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