Date of Award


Document Type

Terminal Project

Degree Name

Master of Landscape Architecture (MLA)


Landscape Architecture

Committee Member

Dr. Matthew Powers

Committee Member

David Lycke

Committee Member

Jessica Fernandez


It is well documented that storm water carries pollutants that place environmental strain on our water resources and increase health concerns for people and other species that use these waters. According to Berland (2017), decentralized green infrastructure has an important role to play in storm water management by using soil and vegetative capabilities for infiltration, redistribution, and storage of storm water, resulting in environmental, social, and health benefits. The goal of this study is to benefit the environment and surround-ing human and natural ecologies in both the short and the long term through the design and implementation of decentralized green infrastructure. The study will employ qualitative data collec-tion, analysis methods and literature review by testing the natural environment for effects of green storm water installation, and by studying human perception of the design. As both a design and research project, a continuous pro-cess of analysis, adjustment and adaptation of actions will be taken to reduce human effects on the environment in a moving water body on a large university campus. Design improvement techniques are based on mimicking the natural behavior of rivers and similar successful cases. A detailed site survey has been conducted through hydrologic and hydraulic analyses and the project will serve to raise awareness of urban ecological processes in a higher education setting. Moreover, design management strategies have been developed to provide controlled conveyance and cleansing of polluted storm water. This thesis will provide a framework for the study which stems from three bodies of knowledge: renaturalizing urban streams, human and urban stream connectivity aspects, and stream renaturalization education. This study attempts to ensure enhancing the functionality and sustainability of the landscape through water treatment as the connective platform for social and environmental health, increasing resiliency and supporting more sustainable approaches to design. The framework for this study aims to provide a path to a deeper understanding of how the decisions made between design and planning professionals impact the local ecosystems of flora, fauna, and people.

Additional Files

Final Boards_Zahra.pdf (16174 kB)
Project Boards