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Springs Utilities pleased with results of flood control project - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Springs Utilities pleased with results of flood control project

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Aerial photo of complete flood control project on Fountain Creek near Midway Aerial photo of complete flood control project on Fountain Creek near Midway
COLORADO SPRINGS -

A new $4.2 million flood control project completed along Fountain Creek is functioning as intended according to Colorado Springs Utilities. The project was finish late last year at a particularly problematic stretch of the creek in southern El Paso County near Midway.

The water reaches a natural pinch point as is flows under a railroad bridge and would frequently overflow its banks and cause erosion during high water events such as the storms we are currently experiencing.

"When (the flows) get high and increase in velocity, they don't have a place to go and it really contributes to a lot of erosion and sedimentation transport downstream," explained Janet Rummel, a spokesperson for the Colorado Springs utilities Southern Delivery System project.

Utilities agreed to make the improvements as part of their permit application to build the pipeline through Pueblo County. As part of the project, workers rerouted the creek back into it's natural banks a short distance east of where it had shifted. 

The creek bed was hardened with boulders and other material and the land in between was turned into a series catch basins that can absorb extra water and slow down the flow of the creek during high water events. 

"So, it's actually slowing down that area and allows (the water) a place to go in a controlled environment," Rummel explained.

Slowing the flow of water reduces the likelihood of erosion and sedimentation. Rummel said they monitor gauges installed by the US Geological Survey both upstream and downstream and found that the improvements worked as expected.

Utilities will begin making payments of $10 million a year for 5 years to the Fountain Creek Watershed and Greenway District to fund for future flood control projects next year once the pipeline is turned on.

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