March 8, 2017

20th St. low water crossing closed, compromise close on power poles

By Annette Tait
The low water crossing on 20th Street SW just west of 40th Avenue SW, near Bubels, is once again closed due to water that started flowing over the top Feb. 28. The ongoing problem, which has frequently been on the Oliver County Commission agenda over the past several years, may finally be resolved later this year.
Jim Jackson, Moore Engineering, appeared before the commission to report on progress on an engineering solution.
“We’ll look at the 15-year design and the 100-year design,” Jackson said, noting that the “100-year” label is somewhat deceiving. “[A 15-year design is] analyzing the most extreme storm that happens every 15 years. That’s been inaccurate in North Dakota for the last seven or eight years -- we’ve had some years where we’ve had two 100-year storms.”
Jackson went on to explain that a 100-year storm event design focuses more for overflow sections, to make sure residents upstream or downstream are not affected by how the crossing is designed.
“You never build a 100-year storm design,” Jackson said, explaining that such a design would be much longer than needed and significantly increase expense. “But you do look at the potential impacts to the surrounding area to address those impacts.”
Engineering solutions are in the works; Jackson will present options at a future commission meeting.

The Weather Network