Sunday, May 12, 2013

Red River cities focus on permanent flood protection

Dan Gunderson and Nathaniel Minor in Minnesota Public Radio: Residents of Fargo-Moorhead are cleaning up sandbags and removing temporary levees after the Red River's crest last week. As it turned out, most of that emergency preparation wasn't needed for this flood. Both cities are now turning their attention back to building permanent levees and flood walls.

Since the record flood in 2009, Moorhead has spent nearly $90 million buying homes along the Red River, replacing entire neighborhoods with five- to six-foot tall berms that serve as permanent levees. That work paid off this year, Moorhead City Manager Michael Redlinger said. "When we were planning for those stages of 39 and 40 feet, it was just a really different flood fight for us this year compared with 2009," Redlinger said.

In 2009, Moorhead used 2.5 million sandbags and eight miles of temporary earthen levees to hold back a 40.8-foot river level, protecting about 300 homes. The same level this year would have required about 300,000 sandbags and a few hundred feet of clay levee to protect about three dozen homes. Flood preparation in 2009 cost $5 million in Moorhead. This year, even if the flood had reached the same level as 2009, city officials estimate the cost would have been about $1 million.

When predictions of a record flood evaporated this year, it meant Moorhead could wait until closer to the river crest to react.

The city has purchased 215 flood-prone homes since 2009 and would like to purchase another 15 to 20 homes...

The Red River of the North rises above its banks and threatens to flood Fargo, ND, in April 2013. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) completed a temporary emergency levee along 2nd Street in Fargo, ND on Apr. 29, 2013. The Corps completed the temporary levee near the city hall to support the city’s efforts in fighting the flooding of the Red River of the North. This is the fourth time in the past five years that the Corps has assisted the city. Photo credit USACE. Wikimedia Commons via Flickr, under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You're so cool! I don't think I've truly read anything like this before. So good to discover somebody with a few original thoughts on this topic. Seriously.. many thanks for starting this up. This web site is one thing that is required on the web, someone with some originality!

My page: Minecraft Premium Account Hacks