Comprehensive diagnosis and technical infrastructure projects for the urban basin of La Esmeralda Creek, Río Negro, Uruguay

Client: Intendencia de Río Negro
Water, Environment & Territory
Civil Engineering

CSI Ingenieros was hired to develop the infrastructure design for the urban basin of La Esmeralda Creek located in the Río Negro Department.
Past and future effects of urbanization on the hydrological and hydraulic response of the basin were assessed. All possible alternatives to mitigate the effects of urbanization were
assessed and explored.
Guidelines for a drainage that would allow for a sustainable urban development in the area assessed were created. To execute the design, a topographical survey covering 3.3 km was conducted, which comprised the main effluents to the area. 21 hydraulic works, household levels and other data was surveyed. Using that data, a digital elevation and contour lines model was created for every 0.5 m.
For this analysis, hydrological and hydrodynamic models were created using open source software. The hydrological model for the basin was created using HEC-HMS (Hydrologic Engineering Center – Hydrologic Modeling System) and the hydraulic model for the watercourse and effluent was created using HEC-RAS (Hydrologic Engineering Center – River Analysis System).
The hydraulic diagnosis showed an insufficient channeling capacity and, as a result, insufficient protection. Alternative solutions were discussed and modeled based on combining routes to be used to channel excess runoff to be managed which cannot be
channeled with the existing infrastructure, either by the current route through blocks or through public roadways, with open or closed conduits, using grass and concrete and with or without upstream retarding work.

Project Scope

- Analysis: Using the models, the current issue was represented and simulations of scenarios combining storms of different frequencies and durations and the waterfront conditions downstream of the Uruguay River were created. This process allowed for a greater understanding of the hydraulic operation of the system, and flood spots were located.
- Comprehensive draft project
- Comprehensive detail engineering