Project Description

International Cooperation of Universities 2008
Zacatecas Autonomous University- Brigham Young University

Hydrologic model of the basin “of the city of Zacatecas’ south zone”


Create hydrologic and hydraulic models of the south zone basin in the city of Zacatecas to be able to study the effect of the change of land use due to urbanization on storm water runoff.


Because of its geographical location, the capital city of Zacatecas is the political, economical and social center of the state.  Because of these attractions, the city’s population has increased.  To satisfy the needs of residential and industrial area expansion, subdivisions have been developed in the south basin area.

The accelerated transformation of undeveloped land put to urban use has been a common process in the south basin area of Zacatecas during the last few years. 

The effect of urban development in the south basin area has led to changes in the physical characteristics of the area and drastic changes in the water runoff.  For example, the now impermeable surface of the urban landscape restricts the volume of water that can infiltrate the surface.

To estimate the spatial and temporal variation of the runoff, or in other words, to quantify it, hydrologic models will be used that can simulate diverse conditions and impacts on the basin that are present due to the change from rural to urban land use.  As such, the hydrologic models can be used to project how the land use impacts the natural behavior of the basin.  These models are basic tools used to estimate and quantify these changes in land use.  In addition, using the results obtained, actions may be proposed which can mitigate the problems associated with urbanization.

The present study will allow the quantification of the magnitude of the hydrologic impact due to the urbanization of the south basin area through the use of computing tools that simulate hydrologic behavior now and in the future. In the south part of the city of Zacatecas through institutional programs, it is projected that in the years 2004-2030 there will be a marked increase in population.  This project comprises a study that will analyze the surface water runoff due to the effect of urbanization on the south basin area.  Figure 1 shows the city of Zacatecas and the area of interest which will be studied in the hydrologic analysis for the International University Cooperation UAZ-BYU 2008.


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Figure 1: Area of study for the South Basin Area, City of Zacatecas

Project 1 for the International University Cooperation UAZ-BYU 2008 is described below.

Project components:

Final products: