Water resources in South East Queensland are currently under threat of failing to maintain current levels of usage. Residents need to be made aware of this situation and realise that the use of mains water must be reduced in the immediate future. This can be achieved by providing alternate water supplies, such as rainwater harvesting, to supplement mains water. Architecture has a significant role in the design of these systems. This thesis aims at recommending design guidelines for urban domestic rainwater harvesting systems in South East Queensland.
Recommendations are made in this thesis for the appropriate uses of rainwater, the selection and design of system components to provide an appropriate quantity and quality of rainwater, and ways of overcoming the factors considered as disadvantages of installing rainwater harvesting systems. Case studies demonstrate an existing system in a single detached dwelling and a proposed system for a multi-residential apartment building.
It is concluded from the recommendations that rainwater harvesting can provide a safe, alternate supply of water to supplement and significantly reduce the use of mains water. It is shown that the use of an integrated design approach to rainwater harvesting is an important issue. The effectiveness of the system can be maximised by ensuring design is considered from the planning stage right through to construction and use of the building.