Legal Constraints on Urban Water Systems

by Neil S. Grigg, (M.ASCE), Assoc. Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins, CO,

Serial Information: Journal of the Urban Planning and Development Division, 1973, Vol. 99, Issue 2, Pg. 137-145

Document Type: Journal Paper


Strategic level decisions regarding urban water management are largely political, whereas tactical level water decisions are mostly administrative. Both are subject to legal constraints. In a systems study, it is desirable to find ways to improve a water system such that the level of performance of the system is improved. Legal constraints which inhibit such improvement are classified and their effect on a typical regional water system, Denver, Colo., is considered briefly. It is shown that a clear statement of goals is necessary in order to formulate a realistic objective function. To speak of optimizing such a function in a general urban sense is overly ambitious at this time because of the severity of the constraints on the system. To consider the general issues in a systems framework is useful, however, because it focuses on the important problem areas so that fruitful debate can occur.

Subject Headings: Municipal water | Legal affairs | Urban areas | Urban development | Water management | Political factors | Water policy | Water level | Denver | Colorado | United States

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