Etang de Lauture - Haiti
When large-scale solutions are imposed upon the landscape, they must take into account many of the small-scale influences in the surrounding watershed. As structures are placed within the streambeds and watershed to collect water, we also collect the silt and organic matter from eroding hills above. Unless these areas are managed well and before the structures are put in, the calm waters behind the dams will fill with silt and become irrelevant. The surrounding ecosystem of any new feature in the landscape needs to be considered. Creating stable soils through groundcover, perennial crops, and water catching practices reduces the volume of water running down the streams and its erosive effect on the streambeds and deepening ravines on the hillsides.
With these structures of various sizes, United Designers initiates the design solution with an intentional and active function within the ecosystem. Especially within the watershed, the structures which have multiple functions. Slowing the water and reducing its erosion is key, but this also gives us the possibility to spread the water over the landscape and rehydrate dry areas. It is also an opportunity to divert the water to another area for collection in a basin or pond. This reduces the water going down the streambed and also infiltrates more water into the landscape.
Overall, floodwater is a result of compacted soils or eroded hillsides which do not allow the water to infiltrate to the water table. Trees, shrubs, and agricultural areas worked on contour increase infiltration of rainwater while protecting the soil. This increases the available water capacity of the soil which then creates opportunities for drinking water from springs at lower elevations.
Climate: Aw - Tropical Savannah
Annual Precipitation: 1516 mm / 59,7 inches
Function: Sustained agricultural systems and increased access to water though new updated cultural practices
Size: 189 acres