Storm closes Marina Drive in Superior againA repair to Marina Drive from last year’s flooding in Superior failed on Friday when it was put to the test before it was complete.
By: Shelley Nelson , Superior Telegram
A repair to Marina Drive from last year’s flooding in Superior failed on Friday when it was put to the test before it was complete.
A consultant designed the repair to improve the flow of storm water in the Faxon Creek area. Delays in getting the final permits — which were granted just this week — coupled with about 2.6 inches of rain caused a portion of pipe that was awaiting connection to bend and up-end. That caused a backup of water at the culvert under Marina Drive, said Public Works Director Jeff Goetzman. He said once RJS Construction removed the pipe, the water started to go down.
But not before the city received about a dozen calls concerning flooding in the area including six homes where water was backing up into the basement, Goetzman said.
The blockage caused minor problems upstream along the Faxon Creek watershed, including some flooding in Central Park. Parks and Recreation Administrator Mary Morgan said the flooding appeared to be at the northwest portion of the creek and had no impact on either the play equipment or tennis courts in the park, which were under water during flooding a year ago.
Goetzman said at least this rainfall wasn’t a “catastrophic event” like it was last year.
Still, Mayor Bruce Hagen said this storm shouldn’t have resulted in problems in the area.
The repair of Marina Drive after the road washed out during flooding a year ago was based on a hydraulic model of Faxon Creek, which flows under East Second Street and Marina Drive into Superior Bay. It has caused backflows and flooding in the Central Park area.
The city’s proposed solution for the area was to connect the Marina Drive culvert to pipe under East Second Street for improved flow of water from Faxon Creek.
The end section has been sitting, waiting for connection for nearly a year, as the city has been awaiting a decision from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources on a permit application to make the connection.
“This is very troubling and frustrating on our part — and now, residents have again been impacted and the city will incur another expense to repair road and culvert that should not have washed out,” Hagen said. “If our engineering calculations had been reviewed and believed by DNR local staff, I feel that we would have been granted the permit and had this addressed.”
Hagen called the situation an example of a state agency not being willing or able to be of assistance and causing taxpayers to suffer unnecessary and undue costs.
A permit for the project was issued Monday, said DNR Water Management Specialist Steve LaValley.
LaValley said the city made assumptions about getting the permit it probably shouldn’t have made. He said the city applied for permits for the culverts at the K street sewer upstream of Marina Drive and the culvert beneath the road last year, but it wasn’t until March when the city applied to close the stream between the two. He said the legal notice was published in May and the permit was issued after the 30-day public comment period.
Marina Drive is closed, and it will remain that way until additional material is added around the inlet to minimize scour and the potential for further
The city plans to install a safety fence to keep the public away.