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Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 15 Apr 2020

Submitted as: research article | 15 Apr 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal NHESS.

Flood Vulnerability Assessment of Urban Traditional Buildings in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Dina D'Ayala1, Kai Wang1, Yuan Yan1, Helen Smith2, Ashleigh Massam2, Valeriya Filipova2, and Joy Jacqueline Pereira3 Dina D'Ayala et al.
  • 1Epicentre Research Group, Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering, University College London, UK
  • 2JBA Risk Management, Skipton, UK
  • 3Southeast Asia Disaster Prevention Research Initiative (SEADPRI), Institute for Environment & Development (LESTARI), Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Malaysia

Abstract. Flood hazard is increasing in frequency and magnitude in Southeast Asia major metropolitan areas due to the effects of fast urban development and changes in climate, threatening people's properties and life. Typically, flood management actions are mostly focused on large scale defenses, such as river embankments or discharge channels or tunnels. However, these are difficult to implement in historic centres without disturbing their heritage value, and might not provide sufficient mitigation in these areas. Therefore urban heritage buildings may be particularly exposed to flood events, even when they were originally designed and built with intrinsic resilient measures, based on the local knowledge of the natural environment and its threats at the time. Their attractiveness, cultural and economic values, means that they can represent a proportionally high contribution to losses of any event. Hence it is worth to pursue more localised, tailored, mitigation measures.

Vulnerability assessment studies are essential to inform the feasibility and development of such strategies. In the present paper we propose a multi-level methodology to assess the flood vulnerability of residential buildings in an area of Kuala Lumpur Malaysia characterised by traditional timber housing. The multi-scale flood vulnerability model is based on a wide range of parameters, covering building specific parameters, neighbourhood conditions and catchment area condition. Parameters for 163 buildings were measured in detail by a field surveys integrated with Google Street View. The vulnerability model is combined with high resolution fluvial and pluvial flood maps providing likely water depths for a range of different flood return periods. The obtained vulnerability index shows ability to reflect different exposure by different building types and their relative locations. The study provides evidence that results obtained for a small district can be scaled up at city level, to inform both generic and specific protection strategies. The paper discusses these in relation to a scenario event of 0.1 % Annual Exceedance Probability (AEP), based on hydrological and hydraulic models developed for the Disaster Resilient Cities Project.

Dina D'Ayala et al.

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Dina D'Ayala et al.

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Latest update: 31 May 2020
Publications Copernicus
Short summary
A localised empirical model that consists multi-level parameters has been built to evaluate the flood vulnerability of residential buildings in a heritage community of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. A new economic loss model is developed to quantify the flood risk in terms of replacement cost, taking into account both specific vulnerability and a normalised depth-damage ratio function. The findings provide multi-scale flood-resistant strategies for the protection of individual residential buildings.
A localised empirical model that consists multi-level parameters has been built to evaluate the...