FLASHBACK TO 2012: Re-built on a new platform to expand its capabilities, the ‘Water Balance Model powered by QUALHYMO’ is a shared legacy that resulted from a building blocks process over time

"This unique web-based tool is the shared legacy of a team of senior practitioners," stated Kim Stephens in 2012. "It is the outcome of a process that has depended on the commitment of a number of organizations, and especially the efforts of the champions within those organizations, to produce a series of deliverables that successively advanced the practice of rainwater management within British Columbia."

FLASHBACK TO 2010: “Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation is providing financial support for the Rainwater Harvesting Module to add to the capabilities of the Water Balance Model,” stated Cate Soroczan, CMHC Senior Researcher

"The early success of the Water Balance Model in British Columbia generated interest in expanding the focus of the tool to reach a national audience. This culminated in the decision by CMHC in 2004 to fund development of the national portal," stated Cate Soroczan. "The rainwater harvesting and storage component with variable sizing and demand will allow the user to optimize both the demand for potable water and the size of the physical storage."

FLASHBACK TO 2010: “Publication of the Technical Manual for the Water Balance Model allows users to follow the numbers,” stated Richard Boase, Co-Chair of the Inter-Governmental Partnership, at the time of its release

“The community of Water Balance Model users had been asking for a technical manual that documents the intelligent WBM interface that translates user information into data used by the QUALHYMO engine. The lens for manual development was the engineering user who wants to follow the numbers from the WBM interface keystroke to the QUALHYMO file. In a nutshell, it is all about data mapping," stated Richard Boase in 2010.

FLASHBACK TO 2010: “Erosion is a key factor in water resources management. Managing this effect has become a clear requirement,” stated Jim Dumont when Environment Canada and CMHC co-funded addition of the Stream Erosion Module to the Water Balance Model

"A principal result of increased volumes and rates of flow associated with urbanization is the consequent increase in stream erosion,” stated Jim Dumont. “This can be an economically important factor as maintenance and hydraulic capacity is affected, and it can also be an ecologically important factor as habitat is impaired through degradation, aggregation and increased suspended solids transport.”

Water Balance Model – On Tour!

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"Have a look at some of the Water Balance Model slideshow presentations that have been made to industry and government groups starting in 2001. This includes some of the early presentations on the Water Balance Methodology that helped pave the way for the paradigm-shift from 'peak flow thinking' to 'volume-based thinking'. The many presentations created awareness and influenced expectations," stated Ted van der Gulik.

British Columbia’s Partnership for Water Sustainability and Urban Watersheds Research Institute have an agreement to collaborate: “The Water Balance Model’s QUALHYMO engine is now linkable with SWMM,” reported Jim Dumont

The focal point for cross-border collaboration is the new US-based Center for Infrastructure Modelling & Management, the new home for SWMM. “Tools like SWMM and QUALHYMO can enable the hydrologic computations; it is up to us to recognize the need, and to deliver tools that facilitate the analysis. I expect that discussions about methodology will be as much a part of the Centre as the development of new code,” states Jim Dumont.

FLASHBACK TO 2003: “Water Balance Model for British Columbia” introduced to local government elected representatives as part of formal launch at UBCM Urban Forum (Sept 2003)

"The Stormwater Guidebook and Water Balance Model initiatives link directly to land use planning, policy, and regulation," stated Mayor Barry Janyk. “Use of the Water Balance Model promotes a watershed-based approach that recognizes the relationships between the natural environment and the built environment, and manages them as integrated components of the same watershed."

FLASHBACK TO 2003: BC Inter-Governmental Partnership previewed look-and-feel of “Water Balance Model for British Columbia” at Partners Forum hosted by Greater Vancouver Regional District in Burnaby (June 2003)

The goal is to change land development practices so that sites and subdivisions function hydrologically like a natural forest. "By developing the Water Balance Model, the IGP is meeting its mission of providing local governments and landowners with a 'decision support and scenario modeling tool' that is interactive and scientifically defensible," stated Laura Maclean. “This will help them meet performance targets for runoff volume reduction.”

FLASHBACK TO 2002: Metro Vancouver hosted inaugural Partners Forum that initiated development of the web-based “Water Balance Model for British Columbia” (July 2002)

The ‘date of record’ for formal launch of the Inter-Governmental Partnership (IGP) to ‘make real’ the vision for the WBM initiative is July 17, 2002. On that date the Greater Vancouver Regional District (now known as Metro Vancouver) convened a meeting of representatives from three levels of government. "The defining outcome of that inaugural Water Balance Partners Forum was the decision to fund and proceed with WBM development," stated Kim Stephens.

FLASHBACK TO 2002: Early decision-making by the Inter-Governmental Partnership was guided by a Backgrounder titled “The Water Balance Model: A Tool for Stormwater Source Control Modeling in a Watershed Context” (July 2002)

"The WBM can be applied to evaluate the hydrologic performance of stormwater source controls (e.g. bioretention, infiltration facilities, rainwater capture and re-use, green roofs) and stormwater detention," stated Dr. Dan Medina. "The output hydrograph generated by the WBM can become an input to a wide range of hydraulic routing models. WBM hydrographs represent a major improvement over conventional hydrologic simulation of urban runoff."