French Broad River Basin Model

Model Development Project Launch

In 2018, the North Carolina Division of Water Resources launched the hydrologic model development project for French Broad River basin. The project kickoff meeting was held in Asheville, NC on April 11, 2018.

Need for a Hydrologic Model

The North Carolina portion of the French Broad River basin is 2,830 square miles and lies entirely in the Blue Ridge ecoregion. Along the varied landscape of the basin, there are areas that have been hit by storm or drought in the past that faced the challenges of resource and operational constraints to manage the river operation and supply the basic water needs for the growing population and for recreational purposes within the Land of Sky region. Water use in the basin is split between ground water and surface water sources. The model will only cover the surface water use in the basin.

A computer model is a needed tool for evaluating surface water resources management in the basin. For long-term planning, the State uses the model for evaluating potential impacts of proposed projects with new or increased water withdrawals within the basin as well as interbasin transfer permit applications. Local units of government, as well as the State, can use the model to plan for increased water use due to growth and to evaluate the effects of operational and regulatory constraints during a drought condition.


OASIS, a patented, mass balance, water resources simulation/optimization model will be developed for the French Broad river basin. The State currently has OASIS models in the Broad, Cape Fear, Neuse, Roanoke and Tar river basins. Currently the New Watauga River basins combined model is under development. This basinwide model uses a daily time step and includes surface water withdrawals and discharges greater than 100,000 gallons per day.

Background Information


April 11, 2018 Kick-Off Meeting Information


October 1, 2018 Model Development Meeting Information


December 10, 2019 Meeting #3 Model Training


Final Model Documents


Contact Information

How can I stay informed on the development of the model?

  • Subscribe to the DWR-French-Broad stakeholders email list:  

  • Contact staff by email at:

If you would like access to the OASIS model after completion, Contact Pam Behm or Neelufa Sarwar to request access to the model.