Oct 02, 2019

Federal Funding Will Aid Nebraska Levee Repairs

After heavy rain and flooding in March, dams and levees in Nebraska were damaged. 

With the funding, 28 dams and levees will be repaired between Salt Creek and Lincoln, including eroded banks.
With the funding, 28 dams and levees will be repaired between Salt Creek and Lincoln, including eroded banks.

Nebraska is set to receive $1 billion in federal funding to help repair 28 dams and levee systems, including the eroded banks from Salt Creek to Lincoln. 

In March, heavy moisture flooded much of the state, and though it didn’t harm the Salt Creek system, which runs from Calvert Street in southwest Lincoln past Superior Street in the northeast, the water moving through the city had a negative effect, according to the Lincoln Journal Star. 

In March, the creek hit its highest-ever level at 22.1 ft, according to the Columbus Telegram. Because of the high level, Weather Service officials propose lowering the moderate flood stage level from 23 ft to 21 ft.

City officials have identified 14 sites in the Salt Creek System that were harmed, totaling approximately $5 million in damage.

“Because there was no grass growing or any vegetation, it was more susceptible to erosion,” Paul Zillig, general manager of the Lower Platte South Natural Resources District, told the Lincoln Journal Star. “Those flows that went through there basically eroded away some of the banks.

Now, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will pay for the repairs along with hiring a consulting firm to design the levee fortifications, according to the Lincoln Journal Star. The work could take until late spring 2020 to be completed. 

The federal funding will also aid in repairing the Clear Creek Levee, which parts of protect wellfields in Lincoln, the Lincoln Journal Star reported. 

Overall, the flooding in March was worse than the flooding in 2011 for much of the state, causing an unprecedented number of proposed changes to flood stages, The Columbus Telegram reported. 

Read more about flooding and erosion. 

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