More than 90% of the multi-box culverts in Iowa are silted leading to partial reduction of the culvert cross section, with adverse consequences for culvert capacity to convey design flows. While the expansion of industrial agriculture and urbanization makes the culvert sedimentation increasingly apparent, the current design procedures inadequately address the issue of sediment transport through culverts exposed to normal and extreme flows.

The “Iowa DOT Culverts” geo-portal prototype aims at informing on the potential for inception and development of sedimentation at culverts. By combining information from data-driven analysis at hundreds of culvert sites in Iowa with watershed and stream information available in national and local databases, the portal enables user to establish the degree of sedimentation at any existing or planned culvert location in the state. In addition, the platform aids designers and operation personnel to store, retrieve, analyze and visualize a wide range of information about culverts using friendly web-interfaces.