Date of Award


Degree Name

MS in Civil and Environmental Engineering


Civil and Environmental Engineering


College of Engineering


Rebekah Oulton

Advisor Department

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Advisor College

College of Engineering


Hydrological and hydraulic effects of urban development is one of the key issues of study for improved water management. The addition of impervious surfaces to once pervious land and re-routing open channels and flow paths can cause flooding or declining water levels within a watershed. Many studies of these issues have found that there can be multiple factors causing hydrological and hydraulic impacts, and it can be hard to analyze and develop effective solutions without appropriate drainage software packages. However, there are multiple software packages available for use, and determining the correct one to use for a specific challenge can often be a case by case decision. This study compares two drainage software packages: Autodesk Storm and Sanitary Analysis (SSA), and the Army Corps of Engineers Hydrologic Modeling System (HEC-HMS). Each of these software packages are used to create a model of the Andrée Clark Bird Refuge in Santa Barbara, CA. The models analyze both current conditions and anticipated system response under the assumption that historical runoff from a previously re-routed creek and corresponding watershed are restored. Each model was used to determine the minimum cumulative rainfall that causes circulation of the water body, a maximum cumulative rainfall that causes flooding on site, and response under both routing scenarios to a 2-year frequency storm. Results from both models are compared for uniformity, and application of each model is reviewed for its efficacy as a design tool for this sort of hydrological and hydraulic analysis.