Committee moves forward with permanent protection plans(WDAY TV) - Grand Forks and East Grand Forks have it. So does Wahpeton and Breckenridge, but the work continues to bring permanent flood protection to the metro. Today, the waters on the red are calm, but we all know the damage this peaceful scene can become.
By: Chastity Walberg, WDAY
(WDAY TV) - Grand Forks and East Grand Forks have it. So does Wahpeton and Breckenridge, but the work continues to bring permanent flood protection to the metro.
Today, the waters on the red are calm, but we all know the damage this peaceful scene can become. To prevent the record flooding we experienced this spring, the Metro Flood Management Committee is moving forward with plans to permanently protect the F-M area.
This morning, the committee approved three recommendations.
- That any flood plan put into place protect from a 500-year flood.
- That levees not be considered as a primary source of protection.
- And that the Army Corps of Engineers study 3 different mitigation options, including two North Dakota diversions and a Minnesota diversion.
While many options are on the table, Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker says it will take cooperation.
"We cannot allow people to say not in my backyard, not in my timetable, and so forth me, me, me. That's part of the process. We have to be bigger than that. There's going to be some pain, there always has been some pain with these types of projects."
The Army Corps of Engineers says an absolute, final plan must be decided on by next July.
Next month, the metro flood study work group will start the process of how to fund the protection projects. Downstream, some communities are concerned about the impact a diversion could have.
A representative from the Wild Rice Watershed District spoke that this morning's flood meeting. Diane Ista asked the Metro Flood Committee to keep downstream communities a priority when choosing flood protection.
She says many small towns north of Fargo already have ring dikes, but they might not withstand any additional water a diversion could bring.
"We can't take anymore water. We just really can't. We're raising ring dikes over three feet right now and we're concerned it will be enough."
The Corps says possible solutions to protect communities downstream include ring dikes, relocations and flowage easements.