Chartiers Creek flood meeting

Karen Mansfield/Observer-Reporter

Michael Debes and Paul Christner with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers fielded questions Wednesday during a meeting about flooding in the Chartiers Creek watershed.

The Army Corps of Engineers is working with local municipalities to develop flood reduction strategies in the Chartiers Creek watershed.

Washington County Commissioner Harlan Shober hosted a meeting Wednesday to provide an update on the Corps’ plans to address widespread flooding that has affected about a dozen Washington County municipalities along the watershed.

Representatives from the towns hit by flooding, along with residents, attended.

According to Lisa Cessna, director of planning for the Washington County Planning Commission, the Corps will spend several days in upcoming weeks visiting areas along Chartiers Creek, Catfish Creek and Chartiers Run, along with tributaries, that municipality representatives have designated as problem spots.

The Corps will model the streams and determine flood damage reduction strategies.

“They’ll come up with some ideas, and at the end, it will be, ‘You can do XYZ here to try to prevent some severe flooding issues, ‘” said Cessna.

The size and scope of the recommended solutions likely will vary, said Paul Christner, an engineer with the Corps.

The Corps use a modeling analysis to determine how effective the flood reduction suggestions will be.

The Corps will not design any of the recommended flood reduction measures. Municipalities will be responsible for the design, construction and costs of flood reduction solutions, said Cessna, and she encouraged municipalities to start considering how to pay for the projects, including earmarking money and pursuing grants.

The project is slated to take place over an approximately two-year period and will be completed in two phases. The first phase, including field work and modeling, should be completed this year.

The second phase, including development of flood reduction strategies and the proposed conditions model, is slated to be completed in 2020.

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