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Army Corps of Engineers releases study on how to reduce flood risk

Army Corps of Engineers proposes levee changes
Posted at 8:39 PM, Sep 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-08 17:07:44-04

TULSA — The Army Corps of Engineers began a study of the levee about nine months ago. On Monday it was finished, in less than half the time it would normally take.

That's because engineers believe the current system could fail and have a major impact across Green Country.

About 10,000 people live within the Tulsa and West Tulsa Levee System.

In that study released on Monday, the Army Corps of Engineers said as this system to continues to weaken as a result of flood events, the levee's ability to operate starts to decline.

The Tulsa district looked at a range of solutions, including buying out properties behind the levees.

Ultimately they're proposing to alter the current system. The tentatively selected plan includes 13 miles of a filtered berm with toe drain, 2,000 feet of cut off wall at Levee A's Superfund Site, reconstruction of pump stations one through seven, and two detention ponds at Levee V Tieback.

The total cost of the plan is about $160 million, with average annual costs just under $7 million.

In addition to recent flooding, the Army Corps wanted to expedite the study due to the population living behind these levees. Engineers say in their report, the impact area is home to a substantial population of elderly and low-income residents.

The study shows the percentage of homes living below poverty around the levees is about 20 percent. In the past, evacuation has been a challenge for people living in these neighborhoods.

Ultimately the proposed plan was suggested as the most likely to reduce flood risk and damage. Engineers also looked at cost and resources.

From here there will be a 45-day comment period. Officials tell 2 Works for You the country will pay for 35 percent of the project over 30 years, with the final design and cost coming in 2020.

To read more about the Tulsa and West-Tulsa Levee Feasibility Study, click here.

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