Stormwater management integrating Blue-Green Infrastructure (BGI) for flood mitigation on the Texas Tech Campus

Fatema Ali Tushi


This thesis aims to identify watershed and flood-related issues and provide solution guidelines and prototypical design ideas for resilient green infrastructure-based landscape design solutions for the Texas Tech University campus. Texas Tech University contains a large area of Lubbock, so it significantly impacts the environment and the city. That is why environmental sustainability is essential to create a healthy community and providing healthy human interaction. 

Some parts of campus landscapes may be designed with environmental and sustainability, but only as a consideration. Efforts to improve sustainability are limited but not targeted at it. Initial steps may serve to achieve sustainability but cannot reach it entirely. 

A multidisciplinary GI-based/simulation-based research method has been considered for watershed and flood-related analysis. This analysis includes four points. Firstly, details about the Site, the water source, the flow direction, and the reservoir area are gathered. However, the quality and quantity of water are most important. The second point is to protect and improve water quality in green infrastructure with stormwater quantity capture and assess the Site's flood zone issue, condition, and opportunity. Finally, determine a design-based solution for reserving stormwater and evaluate the benefits of green infrastructure based on the available data. 

This study shows the economic benefits of G.I. practices, such as flood risk reduction, reduction of stormwater volume, less water pollution, and contributing significantly to plantation and greenery. It has a significant difference between the environment and green infrastructure. 

Lubbock spends a considerable amount of money managing stormwater. Water condenses on impervious surfaces and in playa lakes, disrupting ecosystems, creating flooding, and accumulating pollutants and sediments. By implicating the blue-green infrastructure solutions, we can reduce the quantity of stormwater in our storm drains, save water waste, and improve the quality of our landscape by collecting stormwater for irrigation and storing it for planting and beautifying landscapes. (Too & Bajracharya, 2015) 

Texas Tech University is the second-largest campus in terms of land area in the United States at 1839 acres on the main campus, mostly illustrated in this 1954 historic aerial image from the USGS. Since its beginning nearly 100 years ago in 1923, the Texas Tech campus has had a significant impact on the environment and social systems of the City of Lubbock and the Llano Estacado region. 

While the campus appears greener today, it has not changed significantly from the past regarding people commuting to campus and parking as students or employees. 

More and more previous surface is being developed and changed into impervious surface areas by new parking and buildings. 

The challenge is that increased impervious surface generates increased stormwater runoff, which often creates flooding and challenges campus safety and community safety, as illustrated in these images from the last 15 years. 

While campus development patterns have increased stormwater challenges, so have changes in the region's climate and weather patterns.

 Click here to watch recorded presentation on YouTube.

Permanent link: