“In analysis of the existing levee we are finding there are quite a few areas that are deficient and the levee wouldn’t really act as it’s supposed to,” Hydrology Manager Charlie Dettling said.
Using USACE software and advances in technology the analysis of the data collected shows that this hydrologic study should decrease peak flows from calculations made in the 1990s; however, the project team has discovered that a 100 year event would overtop I-80 and back up, flowing into a subdivision not currently included in the FEMA flood zone. Such an occurrence would greatly affect the area homeowners who are not required to carry flood insurance.
“The levee was built in 1968 by the USACE as a result of a flood in 1962. The current revision and modification has been dragging on. One agreement was reached in 2000 but never went to construction. Summit is currently working to amend the Project Cooperation Agreement between Lander County and the USACE,” Planning Manager Steve Morton said.
This is a unique project for Nevada because it will be one of the first USACE Section 408 authorizations in the state.
Summit’s engineering, photogrammetry, hydrology, geotechnical and surveying departments are all working to raise the current levee North of I-80 and create new sections south of I-80 along the Reese River Floodplain. The modifications will include measures to protect the upgraded and new sections of levee from degradation caused by recreational vehicles and other detrimental activities. This protection will aim to maintain the integrity of the levees.
Currently, the majority of Battle Mountain is in the 100-year flood zone, the levee project will provide protection to businesses and residents and will reduce flood insurance costs.
“We’re excited to get to work on this unique project in Battle Mountain and are looking forward to a successful conclusion sometime in the summer or fall of 2013,” Drew Motter said. Motter is the Vice President of Engineering and the project manager for the Battle Mountain Levee.