USGS Publications—Scientific Investigations Report 2005-5270

Prepared in cooperation with the Kane County Department of Environmental Management, Illinois Department of Natural Resources–Office of Water Resources, and Federal Emergency Management Agency

Continuous Hydrologic Simulation and Flood-Frequency, Hydraulic, and Flood-Hazard Analysis of the Blackberry Creek Watershed, Kane County, Illinois

Scientific Investigations Report 2005-5270

By David T. Soong, Timothy D. Straub, and Elizabeth A. Murphy

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Scientific Investigations Report 2005-5270 is available in pdf format and is 5.8 megabytes in size.
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Results of hydrologic model, flood-frequency, hydraulic model, and flood-hazard analysis of the Blackberry Creek watershed in Kane County, Illinois, indicate that the 100-year and 500-year flood plains range from approximately 25 acres in the tributary F watershed (a headwater subbasin at the northeastern corner of the watershed) to almost 1,800 acres in Blackberry Creek main stem. Based on 1996 land-cover data, most of the land in the 100-year and 500-year flood plains was cropland, forested and wooded land, and grassland. A relatively small percentage of urban land was in the flood plains.

The Blackberry Creek watershed has undergone rapid urbanization in recent decades. The population and urbanized lands in the watershed are projected to double from the 1990 condition by 2020. Recently, flood-induced damage has occurred more frequently in urbanized areas of the watershed. There are concerns about the effect of urbanization on flood peaks and volumes, future flood-mitigation plans, and potential effects on the water quality and stream habitats. This report describes the procedures used in developing the hydrologic models, estimating the flood-peak discharge magnitudes and recurrence intervals for flood-hazard analysis, developing the hydraulic model, and the results of the analysis in graphical and tabular form.

The hydrologic model, Hydrological Simulation Program–FORTRAN (HSPF), was used to perform the simulation of continuous water movements through various patterns of land uses in the watershed. Flood-frequency analysis was applied to an annual maximum series to determine flood quantiles in subbasins for flood-hazard analysis. The Hydrologic Engineering Center-River Analysis System (HEC-RAS) hydraulic model was used to determine the 100-year and 500-year flood elevations, and to determine the 100-year floodway. The hydraulic model was calibrated and verified using high water marks and observed inundation maps for the July 17-18, 1996, flood event. Digital maps of the 100-year and 500-year flood plains and the 100-year floodway for each tributary and the main stem of Blackberry Creek were compiled.

Table of Contents

For more information contact the lead author David T. Soong.


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