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Photo by Srividya Sundar

Dallas Floodway Project Update

This week, the City Council was briefed on an update regarding the Dallas Floodway Project and clarified inclusion of the west levee interior drainage.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) is continuing to work on completing the Environmental Impact Study now expected in the February/ March 2015 timeframe. The record of decision regarding the study was anticipated at the end of this year, but it has been pushed back due to the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014 (WRRDA 2014). This document provides technical corrections to the Water Resources Development Act of 2007 (WRDA) in which it stipulates the West Levee Interior Drainage Plan must be included in the considerations for the floodway.

After the record of decision is released next year, it is anticipated that the Phase 1 Lakes Construction will begin in the March/April 2015 timeframe.

pavaho pump station

Pavaho Pump Station on West Levee. Photographer David Mimlitch.
 

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Community View

Birders Paradise at the Lower Chain of Wetlands
By Jim Frisinger
Fort Worth District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has sculpted one such “wildscape” out of an old trash dump, the former Sleepy Hollow Golf Course and edges of it are adjacent to the Great Trinity Forest and Trinity River. From certain locations within the wetland area, Dallas’ downtown is so close that skyscrapers peek above the tree line.

The Lower Chain of Wetlands was conceived through years of collaborative planning between the City of Dallas and the Corps to more efficiently convey floodwaters thus reducing flood elevations along the Trinity River corridor upstream by as much as one foot. The four wetland cells are chained together to provide this conveyance feature and they are a working system that opened in 2009.

It took three years to plant a different mix of aquatic plants around each wetland cell and to place them on the appropriate water depth for them to thrive. Each is surrounded by a collar of grasslands. All the vegetation was selected to be particularly valuable as a food source or cover for resident and migratory birds and wildfowl.

The Lower Chain of Wetlands this area is a perfect example of what the Trinity River Corridor Project represents for Dallas because the area is a working flood protection system, it provides a seventy-five acre recreation area adjacent to the historic communities of Joppa and Pemberton hill, it provides access to the Great Trinity Forest, and features environmental properties. "The wetlands are a very special place to slow down, look, listen, and enjoy the beauty of nature through the seasons,” said Susan Tiholiz. “What a gift to anyone who visits!”

 

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