City To Host April 11 Open House About Options For DeCola Ponds Flood Mitigation
The City of Golden Valley will host an open house April 11, 5 to 7:30 pm, at Golden Valley City Hall, to provide residents with information about options for flood mitigation in the DeCola Ponds area.
The Cities of Golden Valley, Crystal, and New Hope are working to minimize flood-related property damage around the DeCola Ponds and along Medicine Lake Rd near Rhode Island Ave, as well as in a portion of New Hope. The area receives storm water runoff from approximately a one-square-mile watershed that includes portions of the three cities (see map).
“We’re studying the areas around DeCola Ponds B and C and Pennsylvania Woods Nature Area, looking for opportunities to create flood water storage,”says Eric Eckman, Golden Valley development and assets coordinator
He adds that it’s a balancing act. It’s necessary to create flood storage, but to do so requires tree removal and soil excavation that changes the landscape. One goal is to enhance and improve any areas of the park that are impaired.
“The big question is how to create flood storage areas to reduce flood levels and damages but also preserve as much high-quality vegetation as possible,” Eckman says. It’s a challenge, but if nothing is done, 37 properties adjacent to the area are at a continued risk for flooding.
“We’re developing concepts and will be sharing them with the public and nearby property owners,” Eckman says. Attendees are encouraged to provide feedback, ask questions, and offer ideas.
One reason flood mitigation is so necessary today is that city planners in the 1950s and 1960s didn’t know what we know now about wetlands and open space and didn’t always design neighborhoods and infrastructure to account for flooding and drainage issues, explains Eckman.
Because many wetland areas that used to hold flood water were developed over the years, there are fewer areas for flood waters to drain into, meaning the City has to create them.
Project partners include Bassett Creek Watershed Management Commission, Hennepin County, and state agencies such as the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the Board of Water and Soil Resources.