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How Flood Tunnels Work

  • Published on Jun 5, 2023 veröffentlicht
  • Who doesn't love a good tunnel?
    🥑 For 16 free meals with HelloFresh PLUS free shipping, use code PRACTICAL16 at bit.ly/3Ws1PYm
    Many cities across the world maximize the use of valuable land on earth’s surface by taking advantage of the space underneath for bypassing floods. This video discusses some of the challenges and solutions to these massive projects.
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    Practical Engineering is a Clip-Share channel about infrastructure and the human-made world around us. It is hosted, written, and produced by Grady Hillhouse. We have new videos posted regularly, so please subscribe for updates. If you enjoyed the video, hit that ‘like’ button, give us a comment, or watch another of our videos!
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    This is not engineering advice. Everything here is for informational and entertainment purposes only. Contact an engineer licensed to practice in your area if you need professional advice or services. All non-licensed clips used for fair use commentary, criticism, and educational purposes.
    This video is sponsored by HelloFresh.
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    Video by Grady Hillhouse
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Comments • 0

  • Practical Engineering
    Practical Engineering  3 months ago +331

    🥑 Simplify your dinners with code PRACTICAL16 at bit.ly/3Ws1PYm
    📚 Did you know I wrote a book? There are still some signed copies left at store.practical.engineering/

    • Peter Enis
      Peter Enis 3 months ago +3

      The tunnels can also be a great source of energy to provide a city with its electricity needs?

    • MikeK
      MikeK 3 months ago +4

      Nice timing on this one

    • Jithin Jose
      Jithin Jose 3 months ago

      Hi, another nice video again, but just for understanding, why not increase the depth of the river instead of building tunnel?

    • Owen Selkirk
      Owen Selkirk 3 months ago

      Question why not just put a filter on the end so when the sludge comes out it gets filtered? prob a bad idea but if anyone can answer that would be awesome :)

    • Bill Sauer
      Bill Sauer 3 months ago

      ​@Peter Enishuh? 😂

  • Assorted Subscriptions
    Assorted Subscriptions 3 months ago +1987

    I love this channel because it legit tells me about these cool civil engineering systems and areas if study I had no idea actually existed...

    • FLAiR
      FLAiR 3 months ago +25

      one of the best out there, easy to digest info too.

    • Bradley Batt
      Bradley Batt 3 months ago +4


      SECONDQUEST 3 months ago +15

      Yeah there needs to be more outreach education about civil engineering. Too many people just think water go in the ground and disappears

    • Evan Moon
      Evan Moon 3 months ago +2


    • Doom Food
      Doom Food 3 months ago +3

      Straight sus bruh

  • Taladar2003
    Taladar2003 3 months ago +695

    I think one important consideration that isn't modelled in your model is that the bottom of building basements and subway tunnels is significantly below the point where river banks overflow so even just a few centimeters above the bank can fill up whole basements.

    • WyvernYT
      WyvernYT 3 months ago +48

      That's a valid point, but fortunately it's one we all know; it would be awkward to build model basements.

    • CptJistuce
      CptJistuce 3 months ago +73

      Basements aren't particularly common in Texas, so it's an easy oversight.
      Between the wide swaths of open land and a frost line very close to the surface, there's little reason to dig down very far.
      And while I don't know about his area, mine has very clay-rich soil that expands and contracts a LOT with rain. This makes basements actively undesirable, as the expanding and contracting soil places immense crushing stress on underground structures before pulling away far enough to remove support.

    • Robin Bot
      Robin Bot 3 months ago +29

      ​@CptJistuce they can be built to handle it if you're willing to pay extra, and they end up better able to resist foundation damage than standard houses...
      No one pays extra when they're a developer though.

    • Conor Stewart
      Conor Stewart 3 months ago +11

      @CptJistuce in his last video he talks about the concrete in his garage cracking due to the clay rich soil.

    • lightfeather
      lightfeather 3 months ago +2

      ​​@Robin Bot would you rather they spend their investment on unnecessary basements or on more living space? They're not just magically pocketing extra profits by not building basements. Would you if you were building your own house?

  • Shane Busch
    Shane Busch 3 months ago +91

    I am a mechanical engineer and I hated my civil engineering courses in college but man do I love these videos. Keep up the great work Grady 😁

    • giang tran
      giang tran 3 months ago +1


    • Tiocfaidh Ar La
      Tiocfaidh Ar La Month ago +1

      you know what they say, mechanical engineers build the weapons and civil engineers build the targets.

    • Rocky s
      Rocky s 21 day ago

      @Tiocfaidh Ar La that's the only thing I remember during my ME education. lol

  • Josiah Cox
    Josiah Cox 3 months ago +319

    Top quality content as always! I really love the discussion of real world examples coupled with your home-made example creations! If anyone out there is wondering, Grady's book is similarly awesome!

    • M. Gustafson
      M. Gustafson 3 months ago +7

      Agreed! The grandkids love looking at pictures to "see what Daddy does" at work and to find "Little Engineer" hidden in the illustrations! 😎✌️

    • Crunch d’Grace Hopper
      Crunch d’Grace Hopper 3 months ago +1

      I’ve tried Hello Fresh & other similar “solutions” & found the burden of non-recyclable shipping & packaging to be nothing short of disgustingly obscene. How does he reconcile that fact with his presumed forward looking & sustainable perspective?

    • giang tran
      giang tran 3 months ago


  • Speed Daemon
    Speed Daemon 3 months ago +108

    They had to build something similar to the Tokyo system here in Dallas when they rebuilt hwy 75 during the 90s. The highway got moved from the surface down into a huge concrete canyon that can collect rainwater faster than any feasible storm drainage system could handle. There are massive underground caverns 100ft below Uptown to store it until it can be safely released into the storm drainage system (Cole Park Storm Water Detention Vault). It's so well hidden that basically no one knows it exists.

    • Jennifer Lewis
      Jennifer Lewis 3 months ago +14

      I'd love to see an episode on this! What do you think, Grady?

    • anath ardayaldar
      anath ardayaldar 3 months ago +3

      Sounds like a great place to film a movie chase scene.

    • David H
      David H 3 months ago +2

      I would love to see a Clip-Share clip in this!

  • Z4G
    Z4G 3 months ago +463

    Grady, these vids are the reason you are in a league of your own. No one is able to explain in such detail from experience and have the handy-ness to build something to visualize what you are talking about. Top notch effort my man, you deserve all the success.

    • d
      d 3 months ago +4


    • Kynk
      Kynk 3 months ago +20

      ​@d I read both comments and the only cringe I got was from you. That's pretty embarrassing for you.

    • d
      d 3 months ago +1

      @Kynk didn’t ask

    • Kynk
      Kynk 3 months ago +5

      @d why would I do something you asked? Why would anyone do anything you asked? That's awfully bold of you to assume that people care what you think.

    • Mars X
      Mars X 3 months ago

      @d nobody asked if you didn’t ask (if you reply to this nobody asked)

  • David Falterman
    David Falterman 3 months ago +70

    I know learning about infrastructure is the point, and it’s still mainly why I enjoy this channel, but I also have to say, I love the glimpses we’ve gotten of your family growing in the Hello Fresh ad segments over the years too. What a lovely little household you have, Grady!

    • revenevan11
      revenevan11 3 months ago +1

      I was thinking that at the end of this video, too!

    • Crunch d’Grace Hopper
      Crunch d’Grace Hopper 3 months ago

      Hmm. I’ve tried Hello Fresh & other similar “solutions” & found the burden of non-recyclable shipping & packaging to be nothing short of disgustingly obscene. How does he reconcile that fact with his presumed forward looking & sustainable perspective?

  • John Frian
    John Frian 3 months ago +11

    This is the only channel that can make a 15 minute video about an underground tube, and keep me captivated from start to end.

  • MinecraftTestSquad
    MinecraftTestSquad 3 months ago +14

    I didn't expect a top-down view of a place I've actually walked around. Waterloo park is somewhere I visited while in Austin for university. It's quite nice! It was constructed rather recently (if I recall correctly, there's more to be added). Whoever designed it did so rather intelligently. The plant species there are native to Texas and are picked to support insect- and birdlife well throughout the entire year.

    • Devin DeAnda
      Devin DeAnda 3 months ago +2

      Haha, I live just north of Austin and had no idea such an infrastructure project was developed! I might have to make a visit soon to see it myself, with deeper appreciation for it since having watched this video 😉

  • Hans Isbrücker
    Hans Isbrücker 3 months ago +236

    Thank you for mentioning the metric units too. It really helps 😊👍

    • iTeerRex
      iTeerRex 3 months ago +28

      All of science is metric, the whole world is metric, but we’re stuck in this old British system. I know it costs a lot to convert, but we gotta start sooner or later.

    • Merennulli
      Merennulli 3 months ago +20

      ​@iTeerRex We have started. It's not a bandaid to be ripped off, it's structures and infrastructure to be replaced and people to be convinced. More and more infrastructure is quietly being replaced in forms like manufacturers using metric tooling and gauges and instruments used by the public having both units. But while it's easy to dictate an office change to metric, it's not easy to convince people that conversion is better for them because it very obviously isn't. They aren't meaningfully impacted by it, and they don't meaningfully impact others by using customary units. The people who do, like all companies contracting with NASA for example, have converted because they had a clear benefit to it. For the average person, it's a high cost for someone else's ego over unit superiority. Once most tools and products are in metric, public conversion will come naturally because it will be useful to them.
      And as for the road signs, that conversion won't need to be made by humans. Driverless cars may still be decades away from taking over, but they are inevitable, and they won't get mixed up reading metric and driving 70mph in a 70kph zone.

    • iTeerRex
      iTeerRex 3 months ago +11

      @Merennulli I know most if not all the reasons and problems, I just would like us to get there.

    • Merennulli
      Merennulli 3 months ago +4

      @iTeerRex I quite understand that feeling. I doubt I will live long enough to be on human driver free roads in a metric US, but I at least know there is a world coming where the world is fully metric and our descendants can argue about important things like which ball is a "football". :)

    • iTeerRex
      iTeerRex 3 months ago +8

      @Merennulli oh don’t even get me started on football lol

  • Holzkohlen
    Holzkohlen 3 months ago +6

    I just love these cool well thought out solutions to problems. I find it even more fascinating that people live on top of those structures every day without even knowing about them. Stuff like this gives me back a little bit of hope in humanity every time. I mean, not nearly enough to look hopeful into the future of course, but still.

  • Josh Kramer
    Josh Kramer 3 months ago +18

    I had no idea flood tunnels existed. I knew about storm drains and tunnels, but even living in Kansas City, Missouri - which is notorious for flooding - I had never learned about flood tunnels! Thanks so much! I've learned so much from your channel, and now that I understand their functionalities, I really appreciate the infrastructure in my city so much more.

  • Xavier Hulbert
    Xavier Hulbert 3 months ago +25

    The Deep Tunnel project was recently completed in Milwaukee (in 2016?). I haven’t been in the tunnel but I have spoken to some of the engineers who have, and the photos they show are insane. Part of it is a 21’ diameter tunnel, 2 miles long, and 300’ underground. The entire system is more than just this section and can hold 521 million gallons of water in total. I just wanted to give a scale as to how big some of these diversion tunnels can get. They’re impressive structures.

    • Kenneth Josephson
      Kenneth Josephson 3 months ago +4

      I have been living in Las Vegas since 1985, a metropolitan area with its own amazing network of flood control tunnels and basins, but I am a Milwaukee native. I remember when the Deep Tunnel Project was begun. I grew up on the Northwest Side, where numerous creeks were placed in tunnels during the Twentieth Century and some were interconnected with both storm drains and basement drains. Urban sprawl north and west of my old neighborhood led to increased runoff, adding to the flow of Lincoln Creek , the Menomonee River and their various tributaries, both above ground and in tunnels. As you know, a lot of re-engineering was necessary to control flooding. I heard Red Star Yeast near 27th and I-94 was a casualty of the Deep Tunnel Project. Apparently their private well was contaminated by the tunnel project and their having to use city water made their business unprofitable.

  • Kenneth Kowalchuk
    Kenneth Kowalchuk 3 months ago +22

    Interesting, thanks. I have driven through the Kuala Lumpur SMART tunnel in Malaysia which is a multi-use tunnel allowing water and traffic movement and I believe has proven to be of great value since its commissioning.

    • ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
      ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) 3 months ago +2


    • Irval Firestar
      Irval Firestar 3 months ago +5

      Same here, but as a passenger. Truly a marvelous piece of engineering to be able to fit road traffic within a flood tunnel and having the road still be serviceable through multiple mode 4 activations 16 years on.

    • Good Moaning Vietnam
      Good Moaning Vietnam 2 months ago

      I worked as Senior Inspector of Works on the Smart tunnel project. The idea of a dual use tunnel came from a bidding contractor who won the build contract. To enable escape stairways were mined by hand methods outside the TBM driven tunnel lined with concrete section rings.
      Two road decks installed carries traffic in both directions and the invert of the tunnel carries light rain storm water.

  • radagastwiz
    radagastwiz 3 months ago +6

    Note that flood diversion can be done in two dimensions as well - see the Red River Floodway that diverts stormwater around the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba. It's essentially a large ditch that loops around the city to the east; if the river (flowing into the city from the south) overflows, the floodway takes the excess and returns it to the riverbed well north of the city where it can safely drain to Lake Winnipeg.

  • Daniel Hale
    Daniel Hale 3 months ago +9

    I used to laugh at civil engineering projects that always just seemed like wastes of money for city vanity projects or overbuilt solutions.
    Thanks to this channel, now I get to marvel at the incredible engineering that goes into elegantly solving serious problems!

  • Ethan Neal
    Ethan Neal 3 months ago +7

    This kind of tunnel system would've been very helpful for my town a couple weeks ago. Idaho Falls, Idaho got hit with a pretty nasty thunderstorm that dropped 2 inches of rain on downtown in 30 minutes, and most of the western half of town east of the Snake River flooded pretty badly.

  • Dan Peacock
    Dan Peacock 3 months ago +68

    I trained as an Electrical Engineer (focusing on computers) but I am ALWAYS interested in how stuff works. I come at these with an eye to find some nugget of knowledge and I am never disappointed.

    • Peter S
      Peter S 3 months ago +11

      Another EE here with focus on embedded hardware who thinks this channel is gold.

    • Someone Random
      Someone Random 3 months ago

      CEG here checking in

    • Rutger W.
      Rutger W. 3 months ago

      If only Electrical Engineers were as smart as Civil Engineers, our delicate circuits wouldn’t get fried every time there is a surge😜

    • Peter S
      Peter S 3 months ago

      @Rutger W. You have no idea.....

    • Rutger W.
      Rutger W. 3 months ago

      @Peter S I don’t, but a varistor might do the trick?

  • Hoch134
    Hoch134 13 days ago

    I've never studied anything connected to physics, engineering or else. But this channel is simply awesome. Your style is very refreshing and you always make sure everybody can understand your explanations by building those great models.
    Thank you very much.

  • Æspa Taking MYs to the Next Level

    I live in the Tokyo region and immediately thought about writing a comment about the Tokyo tunnel project while watching this, then you even mentioned it! You can tour there and see it its huge in person as they need to protect the largest metro area in the world as typhoons and heavy rain is not uncommon

  • Walter Perry
    Walter Perry 3 months ago +4

    Grady you are magical brother, I love watching your videos and I've never given much of a fleeting thought to civil engineering projects and structures beyond list style comparisons/records/failures... But you've made it as interesting to me as any other science and I look forward to nourishing my brain with every upload. I'll rewatch your videos routinely and always wish there were a month's worth of non stop streaming. 😊

  • Brian Graf
    Brian Graf 3 months ago +9

    This is awesome. My dad was the District Engineer for the Corps of Engineers when San Antonio was building their tunnel. It was awesome to get lowered by a crane in a man cage down the bore and see the TBM. Very cool stuff. Thanks for the memories!

  • Robert Leitch
    Robert Leitch 3 months ago +16

    This is really interesting to see, many years ago I accompanied a group of high school students learning about local flood mitigation projects around Maitland NSW Australia (some which were completed and some which were planned or still under construction). Maitland still floods somewhat during extreme rain events but nowhere near as much as the infamous flood event of 1955 which was the catalyst for nearly 70 years of flood mitigation projects since then.

  • Brent Snocom Gaming
    Brent Snocom Gaming 3 months ago +6

    I lived in Austin during the memorial day flood in 2015, thankfully not downtown. It was insane how much that city flooded, and I was shocked as I had assumed it was too hilly and too close to the Colorado river to possibly flood like that. Good to know they build a tunnel so it (hopefully) doesn't happen again, along with them dredging the hell out of Shoal creek which is now like 15 feet below street level, and the canyon they built is as wide as it could possibly be (up to 100 feet wide in the lower areas). They also built a nice hike and bike trail along the creek in the artificial canyon, and planted as much stuff as possible. It was a fantastic place to walk the dog when I lived in downtown Austin.

  • A.
    A. 2 months ago

    The one in Tokyo is amazing. It also has many gates to prevent water coming in from the sea with pumps spitting out the flood waters. And gigantic structures where even the holes for the water to get down to the tunnel are designed to accompany the fall (at some point it's so high that the weight of the water would damage the bottom of the structure so they have this spiral/screw design to accompany the water down).

  • Bo Plukaard
    Bo Plukaard 3 months ago +3

    Hi Grady.
    Putting a piece of wet papertowel or a wet cleaningcloth will keep your cuttingboard from slipping, making the overall cutting much safer and easier.

  • Nibi
    Nibi 3 months ago +16

    Tokyo's underground thing is SO AMAZING if you ever take a trip to Japan you have to do a video on it because it is amazing

  • Life of Matthew
    Life of Matthew Month ago +2

    I appreciate you making a stormwater-related video. So many people think that stormwater goes into stormwater drains and then simply vanishes, but it is actually dealt with, with water infrastructure.

  • Chef Coin
    Chef Coin 3 months ago +71

    Since you talked about this, can you talk about the red river flow-way in Winnipeg? "duffs ditch". It's been described as a modern marvel of engineering and is basically just a big ditch to prevent flooding. Fargo in ND are working on something similar now.

    • t asdasd
      t asdasd 3 months ago +36

      As an Civil Engineer and someone from Winnipeg, the flood way is a "marvel" only due to it's scale IMO. It quite literally is a big ditch around the city and there is little novel innovations that I am aware of that were developed for it.
      A fun side note, the reason the Red River floods so much is that the river flows South to North, so the southern part melts before the northern end causing massive ice dams that back the river up. They often use explosives and floating excavators to try and keep the ice broken up and moving.

    • heidi Rabenau
      heidi Rabenau 3 months ago +1

      ​@Serahpin I see that you are mentioning the KISS train family built by Stadler, I think it's a great train!

    • Rod Challis
      Rod Challis 3 months ago +6

      @t asdasd In fairness to Chef Coin, since the creation of "Metrolinx" in Ontario, any project that is a)Finished and b)Works constitutes an "Engineering Marvel" these days in Canada. ;)

  • Anna Myob
    Anna Myob 3 months ago +3

    Thank you for reminding us that there are engineers throughout the world working hard to keep us safe and make sure infrastructure benefits all. Things I've learned on your channel have helped me understand the Nova Kakhovka dam situation. Thank you for being a reassuring balance to that sad, bad news. Humans do have capacity for cruelty and destruction, but also for rebuilding, for innovation, creation, beauty and nurture. May the latter ever triumph!

  • Nick
    Nick 3 months ago

    Hey Grady, I'm a master's student currently studying water engineering and have been really enjoying your water-related videos. I especially appreciate the physical models you build and how detailed your explanations are. Would you consider making a video on distributed green stormwater infrastructure (GSI)? At the catchment-scale, it's a supplement to tunnels and separate storm sewers and I'd be really interested to see you do a video on it, especially if you could incorporate a model! Thanks and all the best.

  • Mrcaffinebean
    Mrcaffinebean 3 months ago +1

    Your models are always so well done! Thanks for informing us about yet another interesting piece of engineering!

  • Phytonso
    Phytonso 3 months ago +16

    As a minor note, Chicago's Tunnel and Reservoir Plan has been "done" for a while, but since the quarries they plan to use as the Reservoirs have remained active longer than was expected the final completion date has fluctuated between 2020 and 2040, depending on the economy and how much money the owners of the quarries are making.

  • Narei Mooncatt
    Narei Mooncatt 3 months ago +3

    Thanks for mentioning the TARP project in Chicago. I drive over the Thornton reservoir sometimes on I-294 and always wondered what it was. From the interstate, it looks like you are just straddling a regular rock quarry, and I thought that's all it was. Being in a semi, I get a little higher vantage point, and it's always a bit of a trip (no pun intended) crossing it. I'll have to read up more on it now that I know what it is, especially since the product I haul is a chemical used in wastewater treatment (though not for those specific facilities).

  • Nicholas Roth
    Nicholas Roth 3 months ago +1

    I've moved now but I remember sitting there one day with a book! I climbed somewhere that I probably wasn't supposed to be and started looking at the stuff they had built. I spent quite some time trying to figure out what that might be doing because it didn't seem like it was _only_ decorative. I had wandered over from a nearby park. Good memories :). Though I ultimately left Austin for what I feel are good reasons.

  • Matt McGregor
    Matt McGregor 3 months ago

    Events like flooding and structures like this seem so simple and are often taken for granted. Then I watch a video like this. Thanks for sharing. Live, learn, improve, do.

  • Matt H
    Matt H 3 months ago +1

    Another great video, Grady! As always, it's never as simple as it seems on the surface. I love that about pretty much every field. That there is ALWAYS more to learn, however deeply you wish to dive...the pool is certainly deep enough!

  • riotintheair
    riotintheair 3 months ago +2

    Fun seeing a civil engineering project from my home town highlighted. I saw dozens of shows in Waterloo park as a teenager and young person in Austin and didn't ever really know about this project. Even knowing some thing about the Edwards Aquifer and how the fresh water system in and around Austin works I didn't know about the flood tunnels. Mostly it was things I learned as a volunteer water quality monitor for the Colorado river - a whole team of volunteers monitor it throughout the watershed doing tests weekly or every other week (monitoring for disolved O2, nitrates, phosphates, and fecal coliform, in addition to pH and how much suspended sediments were in the river).

  • John Maurer
    John Maurer 3 months ago +14

    Another fascinating video about something I've always wondered about. Thank you for putting this together and explaining

  • Sean Jones
    Sean Jones 3 months ago +4

    I live near the Chicago tunnel project reservoir and it's a huge source of pride for many Chicagolanders. We can't wait to see the completed project in another decade or so. My grandparents and parents generation started it, and now we'll put the final touches on it. It's like Chicago's very own heritage project for everyone to marvel at.
    And well worth the cost. It's already keeping basements and sewers from backing up during extreme rain events.
    Come visit and maybe they'll give you a tour if it's dry enough!

  • Monsterbaby
    Monsterbaby 2 months ago

    My city (Ft. Wayne, IN) has a huge tunnel project they have been doing for a while that is meant to prevent wastewater from entering our rivers like they do now. It would be awesome to see a channel like this break it down in layman's terms. Since our local news has did a terrible job of actually explaining the project, and it's a massive job.

  • Sonja Johnson
    Sonja Johnson 3 months ago +2

    I have to wonder whether such tunnels are being considered here in Mississippi...or if maybe they are not feasible due to the local geology. I keep hearing that it's impossible to build simple cellars here because the water table is so close to the surface, and there's a lot of sand and clay in the soil, making for a bad combination of holding too much water and lacking stability. And yet it feels like we have the ability to overcome those problems - and with how frequently we see floods here it really seems only sensible to try!

  • Helix
    Helix 3 months ago +1

    Nice. Dallas is currently getting it's first major flood tunnel as well. The Mill Creek Drainage Relief Tunnel project started in 2018 and should be finished in 2025. It's huge. The tunnel will be 5 miles in length and be 30 to 35 feet diameter, running 100 to 150 feet underground. The intake is on the north side of downtown Dallas and the outfall is to the southeast at White Rock Creek.

  • Brie Frame
    Brie Frame 3 months ago

    I really appreciate your models! Somehow, seeing it live makes more sense than seeing it in a graphic. Perhaps I just trust the live model more than a graphic. Either way, your models are awesome!

  • T K
    T K 3 months ago

    The SMART Tunnel in Kuala Lumpur is a huge, probably one of a kind, mixed use road/flood tunnel. Used as a bi-directional dual lane road tunnel to ease congestion on the city's arterials, but when needed, it can be evacuated and used as a stormwater management tunnel. Takes about 30-60min, and then back to a road tunnel. Has been very useful for flash flooding during the rainy season.

  • Tarasaurus98
    Tarasaurus98 3 months ago +3

    Glad to see you mention the Chicago Deep Tunnel project! One of the biggest and craziest water management projects ever undertaken

  • Jimmy Murray
    Jimmy Murray 3 months ago +1

    The addition of glitter to you scale model was a cool idea! Makes its much easier to understand the flow!

  • mvemjsunp
    mvemjsunp 3 months ago

    You always make great videos, always informative and interesting. I'm a big fan, thank you for all that you do!

  • Caius of Glantri
    Caius of Glantri 3 months ago

    Can I just say thank you for the closed captions in your videos - these are word perfect, so I guess you produce them yourself instead of relying on AI. These help immeasurably when working with people whose first language isn't English. In addition, your pronunciation is clear and you don't use too many collquial expression - some for interest - but not so many as to be obscure.

  • John Rickard
    John Rickard 3 months ago

    In my home city of Wichita we were fortunate enough to get around to solving this problem when the city was still quite young. Therefore we have an absolutely massive trench that bypasses the city core and parallels I-235, and has proven its worth many times. It was also substantially overbuilt - which has come in handy somewhat recently.

    SP4CEBAR 3 months ago

    If you haven't already, I'd recommend you to take a look at the Dutch "waterschappen" which manages the water levels in all the ditches across the country, they preserve the water in the hot summers, and carefully control the water levels to prevent floods without flood tunnels. They also keep the water levels in peat areas (like in the area around the AirPort of Schiphol) extraordinary high to keep the peat from sinking or something like that

  • covishen
    covishen 3 months ago +8

    Excellent content. I'm curious if you could do some episodes on NYC and their flood protection measures since Sandy. What they are doing about the city sinking under the weight of all the skyscrapers?

  • Fred Flintstone
    Fred Flintstone 3 months ago +1

    I worked at a facility that had a hazardous waste treatment plant that was essentially a big distillery. There are several one million gallon tanks in the tank farm and they rest in a very large steel containment basin.. During monsoons the large catch basin will collect a lot of rain water which tends to be collected back into the tanks to be processed which is expensive, so they do a lot of testing to make sure the water that's caught from the rains is safe, and then pumps it out onto the desert floor.

  • lateoclock
    lateoclock 3 months ago +8

    The sparkly water in the demo is so cool and pretty! It makes it easy to see the flow and turbulence too. Thanks for the video :)

  • Mary Beth Mabe
    Mary Beth Mabe 3 months ago +1

    I'm so glad that I have an option to learn cool things about infrastructure and such things! Thanks Grady.😊
    Also I bought your book but it isn't as easy for me to read it as I had hoped, But I like it and am continuing to read it!

  • Alex Zetsu
    Alex Zetsu 3 months ago

    The funny thing is surface bypasses are often chosen around the world. Basically what you describe at 3:50. In the 1700s to 1900s, many times a European city got flooded and city officials took land from destroyed buildings (usually compensating the owners... most of the time) and used them as bypass. This was especially common among the Danube, Vienna has a hole story on that. Anyways basically the destruction freed up the surface required for option 3.

  • Nick
    Nick 3 months ago

    I'd love to learn about a deep tunnel system like Milwaukee has implemented. Different purposes, but both tunnels for tons of water!

  • Big TX Bullion
    Big TX Bullion 3 months ago +1

    Houston needs the bayou tunnels more than anything! Great video! Never knew about the system in Austin. This is such a good explanation and visual representation 👌🙏

  • Tim Murray
    Tim Murray 3 months ago

    This is what the city of Tallahassee used to curb flooding with Cascades Park. They used huge precast reinforced concrete tunnel segments to create an underground river with small lakes along the way. This goes thru miles of downtown and between the universities.

  • Jon Van Oast
    Jon Van Oast 3 months ago

    educational and approachable, as always. thank you! i would love to see a mini follow-up that highlighted flood management with arroyos and other ground-level techniques.

  • kruelangel
    kruelangel 3 months ago +10

    Have a look at Malaysia's SMART tunnel. It's an excellent example of a multi-use flood tunnel. Really awesome!

    • Greg Chalker
      Greg Chalker 3 months ago +3

      I was just looking for this - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMART_Tunnel

    • paanjang16
      paanjang16 3 months ago +1

      Really should mentioned about the SMART tunnel. Can use the tunnel as a roadway for light vehicles during dry times and as a flood tunnel during a downpour.

  • SwordsmanJoe
    SwordsmanJoe 3 months ago +1

    A couple of weeks ago, my city experienced 85% of our annual average rainfall in one day. Obviously we weren't prepared for something like that, and the street drains were flooded until the next morning. Part of me wishes we had these flood tunnels to deal with that...😅

  • Gilbranton Grevable
    Gilbranton Grevable 3 months ago +1

    I wish more people appreciate how much thought, time, effort, blood, swear, tears, engineering, and adaptations lie mere meters under our feet at any given moment.

  • K L
    K L 3 months ago +5

    Grady, thanks you for your amazing work. Today in 2 am local time Russian forces exploded The New Kakhovka dam in sothern Ukraine. It would be very interesting to see you cover of this topic from engineer point of view.

  • MrGrannyStylez
    MrGrannyStylez 3 months ago

    Thank you for bringing up some international examples. This greatly improves on the usual US focused view in those kinds of videos. Keep up the good work. Greetings from Austria.

  • Bruce Ginkel
    Bruce Ginkel 3 months ago

    You have a great channel and put out awesome, simple to understand concepts that makes people smarter about how the world around them works and why we pay taxes. Keep up the good work!

  • Alec Rabedeau
    Alec Rabedeau 3 months ago

    The fact that you have over 3m followers and your video gets 500k views in 24 hours gives me hope for the world. Keep up the great work!

  • Chris Walker
    Chris Walker 3 months ago +18

    Excellent video, perfect example of the flood tunnel process. Very informative!

    • Lsauce
      Lsauce 3 months ago +1


  • sfurules
    sfurules 3 months ago

    I walk around my city now and see things I never paid attention to because of this channel.
    So many interesting things to figure out what they do out there!

  • TransitBiker
    TransitBiker 3 months ago

    I was able to look at the RiverWalk in person some years ago. Was a pretty impressive feat of civil engineering.

  • incy55
    incy55 3 months ago +3

    So, I thought i would mention that I do like the content very much. Your knowledge and delivery are great. Then there are you models. I understood the whole tunnel thing even though i never knew the existed before. then you whip out a model. Your models are awesome. Thanks for sharing your love for what you do.

  • cellgrrl
    cellgrrl 3 months ago

    Grady that was very interesting. If you are not aware, Lake Ray Hubbard that connects Garland to Rockwall in the Dallas area is in the midst of a huge new construction of several more bridge lanes across the water. Also I-30 is being widened and will divide the flow of traffic before it reaches the lake. Would love it if you would like to comment on that as it appears very interesting. They have boats with huge cranes on them

  • YukiSoba
    YukiSoba 3 months ago

    Just sharing. Thought you might be interested in Malaysia’s SMART tunnel project. A flood tunnel that doubles as a city expressway when it’s dry, and when half-used. But when fully utilised, it closes the expressway portion and turned it into a temporary reservoir and tunnel to channel upriver flow down to another part of the city, to divert waters from major parts of the city. Although it has not prevented certain floods in the city of KL, it has actually prevented the most major ones that had happened in the past that as one consequent actually moved an arts theatre to a dedicated location in the present day. The SMART tunnel is still worth mentioning, as it’s so far the only one that most would be aware of that sees a flood tunnel doubles as an expressway under the city. Thought it might be an interesting piece of information, for those unaware of its existence.

  • Ben Garrett
    Ben Garrett 3 months ago

    San Antonio actually has a few of these systems in place across the city. There is the River Walk system that protects downtown and a new system that was built in the last few years on the west side between Lackland and Kelly Field down Military Dr. When I lived in downtown SA on the River Walk after several months of walking it every night with my dogs I heard about the history of its beginning and the flood tunnel that was added in the 80’s. Was mind blown to think about all of the systems that are in place that are multipurpose for everyday use, specifically the lock system along the River Walk, which I thought was just for the river barges at the time but in fact was part of the entire flood mitigation system for downtown.

  • D.I.Y. Dogs Werkstatt
    D.I.Y. Dogs Werkstatt 3 months ago

    I appreciate your effort you put into all these models in your garage.
    I like that they put a little waterfall on that station

  • ProfessorPepper
    ProfessorPepper 3 months ago

    This is a great video on the topic of lifesaving flood tunnels. It's only slightly aggravating our cities need these massive costly pieces of infrastructure that go unused 99% of the time instead of putting in the work to incorporate as much permeable surfaces as possible and doing analysis on what elevations and places we can and can't build enclosed structures. There must be a way to shape a society around nature as opposed to forcing nature to bend to our will

  • Andreas Hård
    Andreas Hård 3 months ago +5

    Fantastic video! I would love a more detailed video of the concept of sponge cities.

  • David Pickles
    David Pickles 3 months ago

    Grady: thank you. Not only do I learn so much from you, but I love infrastructure especially water infrastructure.

  • Bmonkeygurl
    Bmonkeygurl 3 months ago

    I always love learning more about the geology and engineering of our town. 😀

  • Miltonik
    Miltonik 3 months ago

    I work in a utility company which is constructing flood tunnels. The tunnels will serve as a buffer leading the water into reservoirs, parks or open fields. The capacity is calcutated to be big enough to carry one flood/heavy rainfall. After the cloudburst is over the water is pumped back into the normal system at a manageable rate and treated at the wastewater plant.

  • EebstertheGreat
    EebstertheGreat 3 months ago

    In Cleveland, our combined storm/sewer used to discharge untreated water directly into Lake Erie like 50 times a year. Overflows are much rarer now, down to like just a couple times a year, but it's still an issue.

  • IreneWY
    IreneWY 28 days ago

    I visited the flood tunnels of Tokyo that you showed in the video. Quite an impressive structure

  • Make-A-Woosh-Foundation
    Make-A-Woosh-Foundation 3 months ago +2

    I really really hope well implemented flood management, and surface- and groundwater stuff will get more focus in Cities Skylines 2.

    • Debbiebabe69
      Debbiebabe69 3 months ago +2

      You will be praying for a biblical flood to hit your house and put out the fire caused by the game, as it will be so graphically demanding it will make your GPU burn so fiercely and brightly a normal extinguisher will not be powerful enough to put it out...

    • Make-A-Woosh-Foundation
      Make-A-Woosh-Foundation 3 months ago

      @Debbiebabe69 jokes on you, it's my central heating.
      and oven
      and glass forge

  • Jeremy Mathias
    Jeremy Mathias 3 months ago

    Love your videos, and also live in CTX! Would love a little insight into why basements are so rare around here :)

  • Scott the Cyborg
    Scott the Cyborg 3 months ago

    New Castle, Indiana, decided to combine storm and septic sewers to save money. That worked well for people at the top of the hill. During a storm, the results for the people at the bottom was somewhat different. An elementary school was across the street from a house I was working on. My dad had been there months earlier during a storm, and told me the results. First, you could see water and other sewage related items start to dribble out of the finger holes on the manhole cover. Then the surge hit and Mount Crapatoa exploded, sending the cover flying and spraying sewage over the elementary school playground. When I was there, I discovered that the solution was to weld the cover down. I saw the street lift several inches, and plumes of sewage almost 20 feet. But think of the money they saved by putting storm and septic sewers together, especially the money saved by shutting down the elementary school playground and repairing the road a couple of times a year. Eventually the elementary school was turned into an adult education center, because it's OK if adults get violently ill after using the playground.

  • Frank Muchnok
    Frank Muchnok 3 months ago

    Grady, A while ago a local rural property owner sued the township for damages incurred from flooding. They had built their home at the fork of two small streams and expected the authorities to eliminate the problem of flooding during periods of high rainfall. They complained that this happened every year during the spring rainy season. Is there an engineering solution to gross stupidity ?
    As someone who has always enjoyed learning how things are done and why they are how they are, I love your explanations. Thanks !

  • Simon R.
    Simon R. 3 months ago +1

    Grady thanks for your great videos! With the help of your videos, i started to be interested in infrastructure. And in October, i will start to study the subject infrastructure and environment. And all because of your great videos. So thank you for your videos and your great book. Greetings from Germany!

    • Peter S
      Peter S 3 months ago

      This is a wonderful post to see. Best wishes to you and your new career!

  • RoscoeWasHere
    RoscoeWasHere 3 months ago

    Well, you've done Austin, but I would love to see a video on Houston and how it deals with flooding (I mean.. when we can), but also how the roads are designed to carry water because we're so close to sea level.

  • Stephan
    Stephan 3 months ago +31

    As a person who lives in Vienna, I suggest you have a look how we figured out to manage floods from the danube river... ;)

  • ProgramTheVibe
    ProgramTheVibe 3 months ago +1

    Great video, when you talked about the combined sewer it reminded me of my mom, who works for the Cleveland sewer district. I don't know many of the details but I think that dealing with storm water is a major problem and project at their treatment plant. Her work has always been of interest to me and you help teach me the stuff about her work that I would never even think to ask about, keep up the great work. Also, is there any method in development to separate storm water and sewer at the treatment plant in a system with combined sewer?
    Edit: I just remembered that their shirts and their merch of sorts generally has the text "I (Heart emoji) (A simple graph of water)" and I have so many things littered in my room. Its multiple shirts and draw string bags that are all this same blue color

    • mfaizsyahmi.
      mfaizsyahmi. 3 months ago +1

      There's no way to separate wastewater from stormwater once they're mixed, just like you can't unmix coffee from the water.

  • billy
    billy 3 months ago

    I had to work on-site at the outlet of the Waller creek project before it was finished. A massive flood in lady bird lake flooded the site before the equipment to be moved out. It was a massive mess. Couldn’t believe how deep that tunnel went down.

  • Damien Murphy
    Damien Murphy 3 months ago +1

    Excellent content, wonderful practical demonstration using effective models. Watching the cutting board float and slide ontop of the ceramic stove top while you were cutting green onions scared me a little. I am sure you may already know this, but if you put a damp towel or cloth underneath the cutting board it will help secure it. I would like you to keep full functionality of your digits so that I may benefit from all of your wonderful videos! All the best, and keep up the great work!

  • DigitalDiabloUK
    DigitalDiabloUK 3 months ago

    It's always a good day when Grady builds a model.

  • Ian Jackson
    Ian Jackson 3 months ago

    1:33 I always say that too! The only thing cooler than a huge tunnel is a huge tunnel that carries lots of water and protects us from floods. (But really though, water infrastructure is really cool)

  • Leo 06
    Leo 06 3 months ago +7

    The largest system like this I designed was about 10 metres wide, 3m tall and 1.5km in length utilising rcc, this must’ve been a massive feat.

    • Logan Leroy
      Logan Leroy 3 months ago

      Okay so that's 33ft x 10ft and a little less than a mile long. Very cool.

  • Mark B.
    Mark B. 3 months ago

    Excellent video Grady! You make learning fun!

  • Unmannedperson
    Unmannedperson 3 months ago +1

    3:50: While constructing a bypass through a downtown is economically infeasible due to all the high land values, if you think larger you can bypass the entire downtown (not just through it). This is what Sacramento did with the Yolo Bypass: construct/designate a flood plain on the outskirts of the City that the Sacramento River is diverted into during peak flows. This past winter (one of the wettest in recent memory), the Bypass looked more like a lake with several feet of standing water. But this was better than the alternative - overtopped levies and flooded urban areas (downtown and environs).

  • Victor the Orpington
    Victor the Orpington 3 months ago

    With the hello fresh sponsorships this channel has become both an engineering channel and a food channel. Now we need a video about the infrastructure that goes into growing food

  • M. Alan Thomas II
    M. Alan Thomas II 3 months ago

    The Tokyo system is also used for filming impressive spaces in live action works, and has even been used as reference for locations in animated science fiction and fantasy. Assuming they collect some fees from that along with tour admissions, they can get at least a trickle of revenue (pun intended) while generating civic pride in their impressive achievement.