Sumner looks for flood wall funding

The Sumner City Council approved a resolution at its Nov. 17 meeting encouraging the search for funding for a flood wall along the Puyallup River.

The Sumner City Council approved a resolution at its Nov. 17 meeting encouraging the search for funding for a flood wall along the Puyallup River.

The resolution does not establish funding for the wall, but asks the council to begin searching for funding in order for the city to take preliminary steps toward constructing the wall.

On Nov. 12 the Puyallup River flooded and evacuations were recommended in for Rainier Manor, Rivergrove apartments and the Riverwalk condominium units near the river.

Flooding in 1996 and 2006 caused a combined $19.5 million in damage and displaced area residents. State Route 410 closed in 1996 and 2006.

A new mapping by the Federal Emergency Management Agency shows the Rivergrove community is in the Puyallup River flood plain and at risk for flooding.

City staff developed a preliminary proposal regarding construction of a flood wall along the river to protect properties from flooding. The proposal was reviewed by Northwest Hydraulics Consultants (NHC) and they determined the project could be constructed outside the floodway to protect adjacent properties while having a minimal impact on upstream river levels.

Projections for the project show a cost of more than the original estimate of $4.1 million due to inflation of construction costs and the possibility of mitigation.

The Puyallup River Project Task Force held two meetings with Rivergrove residents and determined it would proceed with the construction of the concrete flood wall.

The Puyallup River Project Task Force sent a letter to the city requesting the city to seek financial support for the wall. Support is coming from the Rainier Manor Homeowner’s Association.

In passing the resolution, the council expressed they are “fully supportive of the flood wall project and requests staff to seek all available funding, including applying for all appropriate local, state, and federal grants and programs.”

The resolution took effect immediately after being passed.

Reach Chaz Holmes at cholmes@courierherald.com or 360-802-8208.

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