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Mouse River Enhanced Flood Protection Project Significant Alignment Modifications Announced
Post Date: Nov 18 2011
Tags: 27th St SE diversionflood planlincoln diversionMouse River Enhanced Flood Protection Projectmouse river planRyan Ackerman
Minot, N.D. – The ND State Water Commission and the Mouse River Enhanced Flood Protection Project engineering team consisting of Barr Engineering and their partners Ackerman-Estvold, Moore Engineering and CPS, Ltd announced two significant alignment modifications to the Draft Preliminary Alignment which was released on November 3, 2011.
 
Following the Draft Preliminary Alignment release on November 3, public input meetings were conducted November 8 – 10, 2011 to capture the public’s feedback regarding the first draft alignment. Simultaneously, the engineering team continued the review and analysis of other options and alternatives in order to improve the initial draft by reducing the number of impacted residences and the extent of the constructed features necessary to implement the flood protection plan. Mayor Curt Zimbelman indicated “During public meetings held last week on the Flood Protection Project, additional suggested alternatives were raised by citizens which Barr Engineering and their partners have reviewed.  The engineers indicate that these alternatives are viable, improve the hydraulic flow of the river, and would reduce the number of homes needed to be acquired. I believe it is important that we look at all viable options.”
 
This analysis, coupled with the public input captured last week and the recent determination by FEMA regarding Lincoln School, has led to changes in the project alignment that include two major changes affecting areas that were not previously impacted by the project footprint. “Different people are affected, and people who were affected may be affected in different ways.  They need to know as soon as possible.  This is why we are making this release before the formal release of the whole project plan, which will occur on November 30” said Tim Fay, ND State Water Commission. Both alignment changes result in a smaller project footprint, less extensive levee lengths, fewer pump stations, fewer closure structures and fewer residences that would lie within the footprint of the project and would still provide the same level of protection at 27,400 cfs plus three feet of freeboard.
 
The first modification, to be referenced as the Lincoln Diversion, consists of a high flow diversion that would follow the north side of the existing Canadian Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad embankments from the area near 10th St SW and 2nd Ave SW east to the Broadway bridge. Closure structures would be added within the Mouse River channel at both the upstream (10th St SW and 2nd Ave SW) and downstream (Broadway bridge) locations so the river could be completely diverted into the high flow diversion channel during high flows. During normal flow conditions the river would continue to flow as it currently does throughout this area. As water levels rise, to a flood stage, the river would be cut off, and diverted through the diversion channel.
 
The second modification would be a 27th St SE Diversion which also incorporates a high flow diversion channel that would start near the west end of El Rio Drive and 25th St SE and then run parallel to the north side of the Canadian Pacific Rail main line, continue along the existing grain elevator, and then angle due east at 27th St SE to connect with the main river channel. This diversion channel would function similarly to the Lincoln Diversion in that during normal flow conditions the river will continue as it does now, but during high flow periods the normal channel would be closed to allow the river to run through the high water diversion channel.
 
At both of these locations, the current river channel and levee system will remain intact and will provide protection to a level of 5,000 cfs.
 
The engineering team will continue to evaluate the Mouse River Enhanced Flood Protection Project.  Additional changes, while not as extensive, are anticipated with the release of the next alignment on November 30, 2011. In addition, Governor Dalrymple has indicated that his office is currently working on arrangements to meet with the Premier of Saskatchewan and the US Fish and Wildlife Service to further discuss dam operations.
 
Maps showing the route of these two modifications have been provided here and can also be found at the Minot Public Library and on the website at www.mouseriverplan.com. As with the Draft Preliminary Alignment, the modifications announced today are still very preliminary, but will provide the public the opportunity to share comments on the revisions. The modifications and approximate location of the diversions is shown by the arrows on the maps. The engineering team is continuing work on the specific path of the diversion and more detailed maps will be provided at the public meetings discussed below.
 
Public input can be submitted online through the project website at www.mouseriverplan.com, or by mailing comments to 6008 Hwy 2 East, Minot, ND 58701. Public meetings focused only on these two neighborhoods impacted by the new modifications will be held Tuesday, November 22, 2011, in order to collect feedback from residents within the neighbors. The 27th St SE Diversion meeting will be held at 6:30pm and the Lincoln Diversion meeting will be held at 8:00pm. Both meetings will be held at the Grand International Ballroom.
 
For more information about the Mouse River Enhanced Flood Protection Plan, or to submit input or comments, visit www.mouseriverplan.com.