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Using green infrastructure techniques, the Fassnight Creek Stormwater and Greenway Trail Improvements Project is designed to reduce flooding hazards for motorists and homeowners in central Springfield. KSMU’s Shannon Bowers has this update.
“It’s restoring the flood plain probably the way before Springfield was here,”
Todd Wagner is the principal engineer with the City of Springfield. He says residents will notice a lot of changes around east Bennett Street and South Jefferson Avenue, including two new bridges, a raised roadway and wider channels flowing out onto a newly built flood plain.
“That way, whenever we do have a flood, it won’t get outside of the banks onto other people’s properties and around their homes. So we are creating a full creek and floodway system through there that will carry up to a 100 year event,” said Wagner.
During heavy rainfall, water flows away from raised roads and is directed into these low lying flood plans, called detention basins. Detention basins look like large areas of grassland but will contain native Missouri plants, slowly allowing water to be released and also cleaning up some car pollutants.
So far, the project has raised a portion of road between Utah Street and Jefferson Avenue by three feet. It has widened the channel surrounding the road and has introduced the basin into the Fassnight Stream.
“We are working on the lower part of the creek and we are improving it and as we work our way up into the watershed we will be able to work into the neighborhoods where a lot of folks are calling saying they have flooding problems,” said Wagner.
This second phase of the project has cost an estimated $3.8 million dollars, funded by storm water bonds approved by voters in 2001, and paid for by the Level Property Tax in 2004.
As part of the project, crews will be closing Jefferson Avenue at Bennett Street for an estimated three months at the beginning of next year. Completion of the second phase in the Fassnight Creek Stormwater and Greenway Trail Improvements Project is scheduled for late this spring.
For KSMU News I’m Shannon Bowers.