Five Jefferson City area levee districts have been approved for rehabilitation assistance following this years flooding on the Missouri River, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced Thursday.
Those levees are:
Capital View, a levee classified as both agricultural and urban across the river from downtown Jefferson City on the left descending bank.
Renz, an agricultural levee upstream of Jefferson City on the left descending bank of the river.
Reveaux, an agricultural levee downstream of Jefferson City on the left descending bank.
Wainwright, an agricultural levee downstream of Jefferson City on the left descending bank.
Cole Junction, an agricultural levee upstream of Jefferson City on the right descending bank of the river.
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The most prominent of these is Capital View, which was breached by floodwaters around May 24. The levee, which can hold to about 30 feet, sustained five or six large breaches, with the largest about 1,000 feet long. The breaches caused flooding at the Jefferson City Memorial Airport and throughout North Jefferson City.
Now that the rehabilitation assistance has been approved for these levees, the next step will be engineering and design. Corps officials did not say how long this process would take or how long it would be before actual repair work would begin.
Earlier this month, Corps officials reported they had received nearly 200 requests for help with levee repairs along the Missouri. The estimate for the cost to repair the levees is $1 billion.
Levees can be built back to their pre-flood conditions, according to current rules that Corps follows, but a long-term study to be done along the Missouri River could lead to moving current levees or making them higher.
"The cost to repair is shared between the federal government and the local levee sponsor," Corps spokesman David Kolarik said. "The federal share is 80 percent, and the non-federal share is 20 percent of the actual construction costs."
Kolarik also said the non-federal share can be provided as work-in-kind, cash, or a combination of both work-in-kind and cash.
"In addition to the 20 percent cost-share the local sponsor is responsible for providing without cost to the federal government, all lands, easements and rights-of-way necessary to complete the repairs," Kolarik added. "It may take up to two years to repair all of the levee systems."
Since mid-July, the Corps has kept discharges from their southern-most dam on the northern end of the Missouri River at 70,000 cubic feet of water per second. That amount is not expected to be lowered until possibly October.
During an update with government officials and news media Thursday, Corps officials said releases from Gavin Point Dam in South Dakota need to be maintained at that level to continue lowering levels of their flood storage areas. Periodic heavy rains the past few weeks along the river basin have caused the Corps to continue the higher discharges, meaning the Missouri River is running higher than average for this time of the year.
The Missouri River at Jefferson City was at 21 feet as of Thursday afternoon, 2 feet below flood stage of 23 feet. The National Weather Service in St. Louis forecast the river to stay between 20-21 feet through next week.
Meanwhile, on the Osage River, the Corps' Truman Dam at Warsaw and Bagnell Dam at Lake of the Ozarks, operated by Ameren Missouri, are discharging 30,000-35,000 cfs and are expected to stay at those rates through the next couple of weeks.