Army Corps of Engineers to raise Iowa River output
IOWA CITY– Johnson County officials have signed a local disaster declaration and will ask for a State Disaster Declaration today to be eligible for state assistance.
Supervisor Chairperson Terrence Neuzil and Emergency Management Coordinator Dave Wilson signed the documents Tuesday, July 1.
The Local Disaster Declaration states that Johnson County suffered from flooding that occurred on June 30. As a result, there is ongoing “severe damage to public and private property, disruption of utility service, and endangerment of health and safety of the citizens of Johnson County within the disaster area.” The declaration will need approval from Governor Terry Branstad’s office. The Johnson County Board of Supervisors has declared a state of emergency authorized under Iowa State Statue and will execute the expenditure of emergency funds from all available sources, and the invoking of mutual aid agreements. Local governments have been requested to track costs associated with the current flood event. Residents that are impacted are encouraged to visit the Johnson County website at johnson-county.com and fill out a damage assessment form.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE ) Rock Island District has notified Johnson County Emergency Management of the current water levels of the Coralville Lake Reservoir. Due to the amount of water from recent rains and close to record Iowa River levels in Marshalltown, which is a part of the Iowa River basin, as of 9 a.m. Tuesday, Jim Stiman from the USACE reported a projected crest of the Coralville Reservoir at 711.3 feet on July 11. The reservoir tops the spillway at 712 feet. Stiman said the Corps will gradually increase the outflow on the Iowa River from a current rate of 7,000 cubic feet per second (CFS) to an anticipated level of 10,000 CFS Tuesday with a gradual increase to 13,000 CFS on July 3 and 16,000 CFS will remain in effect until further notice. Those downstream from the Coralville Reservoir can monitor changes at www.rivergages.com.
With the river levels rising, residents and boaters should be reminded of the following:
• At 11,500 CFS output on the Iowa River, one or more lanes on Dubuque Street near Mayflower Residence Hall will be impacted. Lower Iowa City City Park will also be flooded. At this time, the University of Iowa is building a protected HESCO barrier wall around the dorm.
• At 15,000 CFS, output boating bans are implemented on the Iowa River below the reservoir dam.
In addition, as the Coralville Reservoir rises, many roads near the area will also be impacted and closed until the water recedes. As the pool on the Reservoir rises, residents should be aware of the following:
• At 702 feet, West Overlook campground and boat ramp close;
• At 708 feet, Mehaffey Bridge becomes difficult to pass for larger boats;
• At 711 feet all boat traffic on the Reservoir is suspended.
Johnson County Sheriff’s Office is advising boaters planning for 4th of July festivities to please monitor and plan accordingly.