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Oct 19, 2012 5:24 PM by Andy Koen

Stormwater failure causes flood hazard

COLORADO SPRINGS - William Hooper would be happy if it just wouldn't rain. That's because the storm drains on Teal Court outside of his apartment aren't clearing the water away anymore.

The problem was made obvious last Friday when a water main broke nearby on Mallard Drive flooding his cul-de-sac.

"Every single time it rains, it floods like this and there's no place for it to go," Hooper said.

That means his parking lot floods too. In the past, the water has damaged ground level apartments and cars.

"It goes up inside their mufflers and then they can't come outside and start their car and then the cars are flooded."

Tim Mitros, the engineering and stormwater manager for the City of Colorado Springs, took a look at the storm drains with us today. He says they aren't the source of the problem.

"I think the storm drains are probably adequate," Mitros explained. "It's just that the out fall behind the apartment complex, the wetlands have just been created and gotten larger over the years and the flow coming in is greater than the flow going out."

Hooper's apartment borders a wetland area on the Valley Hi Golf Course that used to be called Lake Mallard. Over the years, sediment has slowly built up in the lake turning it into a marsh.

The lake is supposed to drain into Spring Creek, but lately the water has been finding its way back into the cul-de-sac.

"This is a listed stormwater improvement project but it didn't really have exactly what the fix is and so, that's what we're going to have to do now," Mitros said.

Which is bad news for Hooper and his neighbors because it puts them even farther down the list of backlogged of stormwater projects. 

"Doing the drudging, getting the permits, it could be a big problem and as you're aware there's a lot of problems in the city right now," Mitros said.

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