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UBC Undergraduate Research

UBC Groundwater Emergency Water Supply Final Design Report Hsu, Aleesha; Hebbard, Eric; Sandri, Isaac; Maxwell, Kyle; Chitima, Kudzi; Gugay, Sean


The objective is to establish a method in providing emergency potable water to the University Endowment Lands (UEL) by accessing groundwater from the Quadra Sand Layer.The UEL includes the University of British Columbia (UBC) campus and the population is estimated to be 55,000 people per day. Water is currently supplied by Metro Vancouver through two water mains. If these water mains become unusable due to a natural disaster, UBC would be unable to provide clean potable water to residents. Key constraints considered are total water demand, water quality, water volume, and method of distribution. The desired outcome of this project is to prepare UBC to be self-sufficient in an emergency situation. Team 20 created a five-day demand cycle using the given data. The per capita and UBC hospital demand were established as approximately 10 L/Cap-Day and 190k L/Day, respectively. The total required emergency potable water for this project is approximately 3.7 million liters over five days. These figures are the minimum potable water required as per the Government of Canada’s Drinking Water Quantity Guideline. In addition, a groundwater feasibility study estimated 4.9 million liters of available water via ground infiltration within the UEL. The final design was established by analyzing and segmenting the UBC population by location. Team 20 chose six development locations on the UEL using population density. At each location, a groundwater well and pumphouse will be constructed. In an emergency, UBC personnel will shut off compromised sections of water distribution infrastructure and the pumphouse will connect to and pressurize the existing and intact UBC water distribution infrastructure forming a “closed loop” network. In the event that disaster damages the entire water distribution network, each pumphouse has the ability to serve as a manual water distribution-site. The estimated cost of this project, including a 5% consulting fee, a 20% contingency fund, and a 12% tax rate, is $1,486,300 CAD. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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