Track 1 Day 1: Denich Jolliet


Automated GIS Screening Tool for ROW LID Measures: A New Approach to Prioritizing LIDs as Part of Roadway Reconstruction in the City of Ottawa


Chris Denich, Aquafor Beech Ltd.

Laurent Jolliet, City of Ottawa


In response to the forthcoming Provincial direction regarding the requirement to implement runoff volume controls for road reconstruction projects and other local objectives, the City of Ottawa — through Robinson Consulting in partnership with Aquafor Beech and Roddy Bolivar — has developed the first-of-its-kind fully-automated GIS low impact development (LID) screening tool.

This tool is designed to select and prioritize roadway reconstruction projects for LID applications that will maximize net overall benefits on a sewershed basis.

Through past and ongoing studies, right-of-way (ROW) retrofits using LID have been proposed in the City of Ottawa. These studies applied a high-level assessment to identify LID ROW retrofit opportunities followed by a feasibility study for a defined study area.

While this approach is appropriate and justified given the scope and scale of the studies, they represent site-specific approaches to the identification, assessment and implementation of LID ROW retrofits.

In addition, this approach has resulted in a number of challenges being identified by the City, including:

• The current screening process is based on local ROW constraints only and does not account for benefits and constraints at a subwatershed or neighbourhood scale (such as storm collection system type).

• The Forecast Capital Construction (FCC) plan for roadway reconstruction includes hundreds of ROWs. It is a dynamic document that is updated monthly. An efficient means of providing a systematic review of each ROW is required.

• Sufficient lead time is required from the functional design stage to the beginning of construction.

• Input is required from other branches throughout the screening process (such as Transportation Services for future traffic calming projects, and Complete Street objectives).


Learning Objectives

1. Educate the audience on a novel approach to screening and selecting LIDs as part of road reconstruction

2. Outline how GIS and Python script can be used to automate the sewershed health prioritization process, LID evaluation, and screening process

3. Describe how working collaboratively with various City departments, as well as local and provincial agencies, and applying existing GIS data with forecasted roadway reconstruction projects can be used to screen, select and prioritize the implementation of LID to prioritize the expenditure of capital dollars while maximizing the net overall benefit on a sewershed basis


Chris Denich

Chris Denich

Chris Denich, MSc, P.Eng. is the director of the Water Resource Engineering and Green Infrastructure division of Aquafor Beech Ltd., where he participates in a variety of municipal, private and public sector projects focusing on stormwater management using innovative approaches such as low impact development (LID) and green infrastructure (GI), for both retrofit and new developments.

Chris is responsible for the planning, project management, staff assignments, agency contact and public consultation of such projects.

In addition, he is responsible for the planning, design and construction of more than 50 LID and GI installations and projects across Canada, including several award winners, and has authored numerous stormwater management (SWM) and LID standards and guidance documents.

Chris is recognized as an expert in LID, GI and Sustainable SWM by numerous municipalities and organization including Toronto Water, Canadian and Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), Canadian Standards Association (CSA), Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), Credit Valley Conservation (CVC), Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority (LSRCA), the Alberta Low Impact Development Partnership (ALIDP), Sustainable Building Canada (SBC), American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), Interlocking Concrete Paving Institute (ICPI) and others.

Laurent Jolliet

Laurent Jolliet, MASc, P.Eng. is a senior project manager in the Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development Department of the City of Ottawa.

Laurent is responsible for the management of a wide range of engineering assignments that cover the planning, modeling, environmental assessment and functional design of growth and renewal stormwater infrastructure projects.