Option D Approved!

Boulder’s City Council voted unanimously to approve the South Boulder Creek Flood Mitigation Planning Study/Option D last night! Read the full story in the Daily CameraSouth Boulder Creek flood mitigation moves forward. Here are a few excerpts

To the cheers of south Boulder residents, including several dozen people from the Frasier Meadows retirement community, the City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve “Option D” for South Boulder Creek mitigation.

The plan calls for the construction of a berm in Colorado Department of Transportation right-of-way and detention facilities on land owned by the university for a future south campus.

In addition to reducing the flood risk for a large portion of southeast Boulder, the berm and detention facilities should also keep U.S. 36 open in a major flood event, officials said.

The option was developed at the urging of area residents and avoids potential environmental impacts of an earlier proposal to build the berm on city-owned open space.

DOT has already done environmental mitigation in the area for a multi-use path along U.S. 36.

. . .

Residents of Frasier Meadows recounted harrowing stories of close calls in the flood of September 2013.

Dick Leupold said his wife, who was very ill at the time of the flood, was rescued from rising floodwaters but died two months later. He said he’ll always wonder if the flood hastened her death.

Ryan Eisenbraun said the residents of two apartment buildings he owns on Thunderbird Circle, including families with young children, had to escape powerful floodwaters and lost everything they owned.

“Residents were literally thrown across the room by the power of rushing water,” he said. “Some residents had to escape through broken windows because doors were mangled. Appliances were pushed through drywall.”

Rick Mahan of the South Boulder Creek Action Group said the flood’s impact is often characterized as water in basements, but in his neighborhood, it was “44 inches of rushing water.”

Councilwoman Lisa Morzel, who recalled working on flood mitigation plans years ago, said she understands residents of south Boulder live with trauma and fear from the 2013 floods.

“The city has to help stop that pain, and we have to do what we’re supposed to do, which is protect your lives and property,” Morzel said. “I hope we can move as fast as possible on this.”

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