Winter 2022 Levee and Floodwall Update

Hi all,

Well, here’s the most recent update I’ve been able to obtain. Please don’t shoot the messenger. I don’t work for the City, nor do I have any particular relationship with the City other than being able to obtain updates because of past efforts to help bring to completion the levee and floodwall project.

Issues and items identified in the last levee and floodwall update (October 2021) included the following:
(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 test was completed. However, the subsequent inspection revealed weld cracking from expansion of wall materials.  The USACE is currently completing a contract modification so it may complete the desired repairs.
(2) 52nd Street rebar replacement. Increasing structural integrity along the foundation of the flood wall crossing at 52nd Street required placing additional rebar steel in the roadway. This work was completed late December 2021.
(3) Video inspection of the foundation drains along the floodwall. Storm water pipes and other utilities, if any, within fifteen feet of the toe of the levee or floodwall must be inspected to ensure there has been no displacement or deflection of infrastructure impacting the flood works and levee and floodwall project. This work was not completed as of October 2021 and remains underway. Open items include additional video inspection.  The Corps is modifying work contracts to allow for this. Additional open items include finalizing extensive, standardized reports of completed visual inspections.
Finally, and unfortunately, the above work, previously projected to be completed by end of year 2021, now has an estimated May 2022 completion date. Then, the Corps submits final project documents to FEMA for its review. This completes the Corp’s certification process and triggers the FEMA accreditation process. The accreditation process is expected to be completed within 4 – 6 months, and so final relief now is not anticipated by the City until year end (December 2022).

Frankly, based on continuing repeated delay with project certification, I do not expect relief to occur until spring/summer 2023.
Thanks, and please reach out with any questions.

Jim Polito

ps … on an unrelated note … I’m trying to increase viewership among a current events channel I’ve created. It primarily serves my introductory economics students, but, heck! … just in case you might like short daily clips of current events: