Levee and Floodwall Update – Fall 2021

Hi all,

Here’s the most recent information I’ve been able to find:

On May 10, 2021, the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) team responsible for the Indianapolis North Flood Damage Reduction Project (INFDRP) met with FEMA to discuss submitting remaining documents and estimated timeframes for FEMA review and Letter of Map Revision (LOMR) completion. Submission documents for the final USACE levee “certification” process include the completed Hydrologic and Hydraulic analysis as well as the USACE Levee Safety Evaluation Report (LSER). At the time of the meeting, three items needed to be completed before the USACE could finalize the LSER:

(1) Passive wall testing. A positive and complete Levee Safety Evaluation Report requires the USACE to test the passive wall infrastructure along Westfield Boulevard at the 52nd Street crossing. This work was bid to a contractor, and the USACE and contractor began preparing to test the passive wall on September 14, 2021. The passive wall test included raising the passive wall by flooding the interior of a barrier constructed along the foundation of the structure. The test concluded successfully.

(2) 52nd Street rebar: Increasing structural integrity along the foundation of the flood wall crossing at 52nd Street requires placing additional rebar steel in the roadway. This work first was identified nearly a year ago in our October 2020 levee and floodwall update. The work has been bid to a contractor. However, the work has not started yet as the contractor now works through the right-of-way permitting process. USACE indicates all project work will be completed no later than December 15, 2021. The City indicates it does not find this delay concerning. However, given the work has not yet started, it is not difficult to imagine this timeline slipping. We will have greater visibility with our winter (February 2021) update.

(3) Video inspection of the foundation drains along the floodwall. This work is not reported as completed. The City expects this work will be completed quickly once started, and indicates it will attempt to obtain a planned start date for this work from the contractor.

Pending completion of the above items, “certification” of the INFDRP will be complete. USACE then will submit all documentation to FEMA for their review and “accreditation”. FEMA determines their own schedule for completing the “accreditation” process, which includes floodplain map revision. Given the proposed/allowable inter-agency schedule, USACE continues to estimate an effective date for the newly revised floodplain map between August 2022 and May 2023.

Finally, to my Warfleigh neighbors: The next neighborhood association meeting is Tuesday, October 12, 6pm (virtual). I’ve nominated myself for an open position on the board of directors. Please attend the meeting and give me a vote (?!) if you would like to help me continue to find ways to serve the neighborhood.

Jim Polito

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