Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Impact of climate change on disruption to urban transport networks from pluvial flooding

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Maria Pregnolato, Dr Alistair FordORCiD, Dr Vassilis Glenis, Professor Sean Wilkinson, Professor Richard DawsonORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


© ASCE. Short-duration, high-intensity rainfall causes significant disruption to transport operations, and climate change is projected to increase the frequency and intensity of these events. Disruption costs of flooding are currently calculated using crude approaches. To support improved business cases for adapting urban infrastructure to climate change, this paper presents an integrated framework that couples simulations of flooding and transport to calculate the impacts of disruption. A function, constructed from a range of observational and experimental data sources, is used to relate flood depth to vehicle speed, which is more realistic than the typical approach of categorizing a road as either blocked or free flowing. The framework is demonstrated on Newcastle upon Tyne in the United Kingdom and shows that by the 2080s disruption across the city from a 1-in-50-year event could increase by 66%. A criticality index is developed and is shown to provide an effective metric to prioritize intervention options in the road network. In this case, just two adaptation interventions can reduce travel delays across the city by 32%.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Pregnolato M, Ford A, Glenis V, Wilkinson S, Dawson R

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Infrastructure Systems

Year: 2017

Volume: 23

Issue: 4

Print publication date: 01/12/2017

Online publication date: 11/05/2017

Acceptance date: 26/01/2017

Date deposited: 30/05/2017

ISSN (print): 1076-0342

ISSN (electronic): 1943-555X

Publisher: American Society of Civil Engineers


DOI: 10.1061/(ASCE)IS.1943-555X.0000372


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric


Funder referenceFunder name