Intensity–Duration–Frequency (IDF) curves describe the relationship between rainfall intensity, rainfall duration, and return period. They are commonly used in the design, planning and operation of hydrologic, hydraulic, and water resource systems. Considering the intense rainfall presence with flooding occurrences, limited data used to develop IDF curves, and importance to improve the IDF design for the Ensenada City in Baja California, this research study aims to investigate the use and combinations of pluviograph and daily records, to assess rain behavior around the city, and select a suitable method that provides the best results of IDF relationship, consequently updating the IDF relationship for the city for return periods of 10, 25, 50, and 100 years. The IDF relationship is determined through frequency analysis of rainfall observations. Also, annual maximum rainfall intensity for several duration and return periods has been analyzed according to the statistical distribution of Gumbel Extreme Value (GEV). Thus, Chen’s method was evaluated based on the depth-duration ratio (R) from the zone, and the development of the IDF relationship for the rain gauges stations was focused on estimating the most suitable (R) ratio; chosen from testing several methods and analyzing the rain in the region from California and Baja California. The determined values of the rain for one hour and return period of 2 years 2 (P) 1 obtained were compared to the values of some cities in California and Baja California, with a range between 10 and 16.61 mm, and the values of the (R) ratio are in a range between 0.35 and 0.44; this range is close to the (R) ratio of 0.44 for one station in Tijuana, a city 100 km far from Ensenada. The values found here correspond to the rainfall characteristics of the zone; therefore, the method used in this study can be replicated to other semi-arid zones with the same rain characteristics. Finally, it is suggested that these results of the IDF relationship should be incorporated on the Norm of the State of Baja California as the recurrence update requires it upon recommendation. This study is the starting point to other studies that imply the calculation of a peak flow and evaluation of hydraulic structures as an input to help improve flood resilience in the city of Ensenada.
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