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Major impacts in hydrologic dynamics are expected due to climate change, especially in highly disordered urbanized areas like São Paulo City, which has suffered extreme flood events and water pollution. Similar consequences have been documented in other highly disordered urbanized cities in Latin America, such as Mexico City (Mexico), Bogotá (Colombia), and Santiago (Chile). Over the years, various projects and initiatives were made to manage flood hazards and water quality of the Tietê. However, apart from gray infrastructure and superficial green approaches, Natural and Nature-Based Features (NNBF) as potential solutions have not yet been studied nor applied in this system.

This project aims to determine how these features can be applied to densely urbanized river floodplains to develop efficient, sustainable, and resilient systems. The hydrodynamic model will include surface runoff, stream flow, and storm sewer. The proposed NNBF system will be introduced into the model to assess its efficiency, such as levee setbacks, floodplain storage, and pocket parks. Under multiple environmental forcings, including precipitation, storm flow, and illegal sewer discharge, the best combination of solutions will be determined using a multicriteria decision analysis. Thus, the design solutions will target the community’s needs and challenges from a holistic perspective. Most Latin Americans face similar challenges related to past and recent political, economic, social, and environmental mismanagement. Therefore, our goal is to share knowledge to transform the world’s extensive and complex system into a resilient and sustainable one that can endure future challenges.

Team Members

Dr. Felix Santiago-CollazoLuciana Tarcha


Collaboration with The University of São Paulo (USP), Brazil