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Levee "really maxing out'

Levee "really maxing out'

June 4th, 2013 by The News Tribune in News

On his lunch break, Tony Wilde checks out the waters from Wears Creek on the state parking lot by West Main Street.

The levee that protects Jefferson City's airport and sewage treatment plant held to nearly a foot above its rated level in what the National Weather Service said was the ninth-highest recorded flood level here.

But as water levels recede, local residents are still recovering from weekend flooding from creeks in low-lying areas. At 8 p.m. Monday, the river stood at 29.7 feet.

Matt Morasch, interim public works director, said the city used its 2008 flood plan to help identify areas that were likely to flood.

"That plan just worked out real well," Morasch said.

On the southern side of the Missouri River, Morasch said, the city saw some street flooding in low areas, affecting fewer than six streets. Residents likely saw some yard flooding, he said, but only Geneva Street residents requested sandbags from the city.

"I don't think their houses were really in danger of flooding," Morasch said. "It was getting close to them ... it was more yard flooding."

In North Jefferson City, Morasch said, the people who work with the Capital View Drainage District, which oversees the levee, have worked tirelessly to plug gaps and leaks in the levee and keep it holding.

"We assist them and aid them as we can," Morasch said. "The levee guys work really hard."

He said the levee workers have kept the leaks to a minimum, and the levee is continuing to hold, even as it topped what it originally was built to hold.

"It's really maxing out," Morasch said. "We say 30 (feet), but it'll go a little bit higher obviously, to 30.7 apparently."

"This is as much water as that levee's ever held for us."

Rain is forecasted to continue today, but Morasch said the city is optimistic the water levels will have fallen somewhat before that begins and hopes the rain falls at a reasonable pace where flash flooding would not be a concern.


moved to Binder

All kindergarten through second grade T-ball and coach pitch baseball games have been moved, at least for this week, to the Binder Softball Complex at Binder Park.

The games are played Sunday through Fridays, normally on the North Jefferson City fields. But those fields are under 1-11⁄2 feet of water due to flooding from Turkey Creek, said Angie Toebben, a recreation program supervisor at the parks department.

Toebben said some people have predicted the water could be off the fields by Wednesday or Thursday.

"Hopefully, we'll have them ready to go for next week," she said. "But we won't know any more until the water goes down."

The K-2 games will be held at Byrd Field, which is the farthest field to the right from South Binder Lake Road, the road entering Binder Park from Business 50 West in Apache Flats.

For some games, Byrd Field will be divided into two fields, using the infield for one and the outfield for the other, she said.

For Friday and Sunday games, other fields at Binder could be used, she said, although that hasn't yet been determined.

State lots under water

Of the more than 1,600 parking state parking spaces near the Truman and Broadway State Office Buildings, at least 700 were under water Monday when employees reported for work.

The state doesn't have a specific backup plan.

"Employees need to find alternate parking at this time," said Office of Administration spokeswoman Wanda Seeney.

"The barricades are being removed as the water recedes."

Seeney said the flooded lots were the only flood-related problems the state had Monday.

"We have not been made aware of any flood-related damage to state properties," she said.