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Managing Floods in Urban Catchments: Experiences in Denver Area (Colorado, USA) and Geneva (Switzerland)

  • Bill De Groot
  • David Mallory
  • Georges Descombes
  • G. Mathias Kondolf
  • Anna Serra-Llobet
Chapter

Abstract

As Denver, Colorado, began its rapid growth in the 1960s, two major floods led to the formation of an extensive flood control district, which adopted a two-pronged approach: Through land-use regulation, it prevented further development in floodplains. In already-built floodplain areas, it removed houses where possible and elsewhere used structural measures to reduce flood hazard. The result is fewer houses vulnerable to flooding than before, and large riparian parklands, providing ecological and social benefits. The River Aire flows north and east from the French Alps to central Geneva. About 5 km of the river was channelized in the nineteenth century to provide better drainage, but this conveyed floods faster, increasing flood risk downstream. Restoration of the Aire River included two extensive, shallow impoundments on the floodplain to reduce peak flows downstream and a highly innovative approach to allowing for a dynamic channel within a framework of multiple possible channels from which the river could adopt a course.

Keywords

Flood risk management Urban catchments espace de liberté Denver Geneva 

Reference

  1. Kondolf, G.M. 2012. The espace de liberté and Restoration of Fluvial Process: When Can the River Restore Itself and When Must We Intervene? In River Conservation and Management, ed. P. Boon and P. Raven, 225–242. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bill De Groot
    • 1
  • David Mallory
    • 1
  • Georges Descombes
    • 2
  • G. Mathias Kondolf
    • 3
    • 4
  • Anna Serra-Llobet
    • 3
    • 5
  1. 1.Denver Urban Drainage and Flood Control DistrictDenverUSA
  2. 2.ADR ArchitectsGenevaSwitzerland
  3. 3.University of California BerkeleyBerkeleyUSA
  4. 4.University of LyonLyonFrance
  5. 5.Aix-Marseille UniversityMarseilleFrance

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