Construction of Yakima River Setback Levee Progresses Well (USA)

Construction of Yakima River Setback Levee Progresses Well.

The Yakima River levee system is bustling with activity these days as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers works to construct a setback levee measuring nearly 3,900 linear feet on the left bank of the Yakima River near Sportsman State Park.

Construction commenced Monday on the approximately $2.9 million federally-funded project which is expected to be complete by early February.

High flows during a May 2011 flood event damaged approximately 500 feet of the Yakima Authorized Levee at Sportsman Park and reduced flood defense to a 2-year flood protection level. While a plan to repair and restore the damaged levee to its original condition was considered, it was ruled out. Repairing the levee to restore flood protection prior to the spring flood season, would have required in-water work outside of the fish window, potentially harming or harassing Endangered Species Act listed fish. By setting back the levee, flood protection could be restored with only out-of-water construction.

Working closely with Yakima County, the Corps developed the setback design alternative which would minimize environmental impacts and was in-line with the County’s long term, basin-wide realignment plan, according to Brian Nelson, Yakima Authorized Levee Rehabilitation project manager for the Army Corps of Engineers, Seattle District.

The setback segment will start upstream of West Birchfield Road and extend downstream to the Washington State Highway 24 bridge abutment. Riprap armor protection on the setback levee will extend up to the 100-year flood protection level and the levee crown will provide an additional three feet of freeboard height.

The downstream end of the existing levee will be removed to ground level, to include removing 200 linear feet from the center line of the old State Route 24 bridge approach. In order for the setback levee to function correctly within the Yakima River levee system, the remainder of the old bridge embankment will be armored with a four-foot-thick blanket of riprap.

The project will reconnect 20 acres of floodplain at the setback site, providing an opportunity for high flow events to establish side channels and natural depressions that will increase flood storage, limit hardened banks along the river, improve riparian corridors, and increase habitat function for endangered salmonids,” Nelson said.

Throughout the planning process the Corps coordinated and worked with a number of state and federal agencies, including: Yakima County, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Washington State Parks and Reclamation, Washington State Department of Transportation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Washington Department of Ecology, and the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Dredging Today Staff, January 13, 2012; Image: usace

Share this article

Follow Dredging Today

2 thoughts on “Construction of Yakima River Setback Levee Progresses Well (USA)”

Comments are closed.

Events>

<< Sep 2015 >>
MTWTFSS
31 1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 1 2 3 4

Baltic Ports Conference 2015

The Baltic maritime market is currently facing a change caused by new market conditions…

read more >

HYPACK Seminar – Indonesia

The 3-day training seminar will cover all the aspects of single beam and multibeam hydrographic surveying and dredge management using…

read more >

Dredging in India

The conference is being organised by India Infrastructure Publishing, a provider of information on the infrastructure sectors through…

read more >

Port Infrastructure Development 2015

Focusing on every aspect of port development from expansion through to life extension, this event will deliver learning outcomes from…

read more >

Jobs>

Business Development Manager – South East Asia - Dredging & Marine Construction

As the Business Development Manager for the South East Asian Region, you will work closely with the board to implement the business development strategy...

apply

Senior Engineer

Gahagan & Bryant Associates, Inc. (GBA) is posting the following career opportunity in their Houston, TX and Baltimore, MD and Tampa, FL offices...

apply

Hydrographic Surveyor

Gahagan & Bryant Associates, Inc. (GBA) is posting the following career opportunity in their Houston, TX and Baltimore, MD and Tampa, FL offices....

apply