The objective of this study is to present a distributed hydrological model especially dedicated to urban catchments, and able to represent hydrological processes usually neglected in urban modelling, such as evapotranspiration, infiltration in roads, or direct infiltration of soil water in sewers. This model, called URBS (as Urban Runoff Branching Structure) is distributed considering the spatial variability of land use which is well known thanks to urban databanks managed by GIS. The production function is detailed at each cadastral parcel scale, and the runoff produced is routed by a simple transfer function. The estimation of the input parameters of the model is mostly based on physical considerations, and the model is applied on a suburban catchment in Nantes (France) in order to evaluate the interest of the distribution of the hydrological variables.

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