Oct 21, 2021

$5 Million Loan to Alleviate Storm Water Flood Issues in Wagoner, Arkansas

Much of Wagoner’s storm water flooding issues stem from the city only having a floodplain ordinance covering regulation of development affecting east Coal Creek and the north and south unnamed tributaries to Coal Creek.

storm water

Wagoner, Arkansas, City Councilors approved a $5 million loan authorization from the Oklahoma Water Resources Board to fund projects to alleviate storm water flooding in the city.

The total loan amount is $5,040,000 and will fund storm water conveyance and regional storm water detention projects, reported The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

The projects include: 

  • Street Scape Drainage – Downtown E. Cherokee Street to Regional SWD
  • Downtown Casaver Drainage – E. Casaver to Public Works Inventory to S. Wagoner Ave.
  • Hospital Site – Regional SWD and Drainage Collection Channel
  • Maple Park Regional SWD w Skate Park
  • Maple Park Re-channelization – 800 LF DS Skate Park
  • Maple Park Regional SWD

These are areas that are heavily impacted by storm water flooding, according to Bill Smith, Wagoner’s FloodPlain Administrator, reported The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

The Street Scape Drainage project is time sensitive due to the fact that Oklahoma Department of Transportation crews will soon be getting ready to start work on Wagoner’s streetscape. As a result of this, crews can not resurface roads or make sidewalks where there are storm drainage systems that need to be expanded underground first.

Much of Wagoner’s storm water flooding issues stem from the city only having a floodplain ordinance covering regulation of development affecting east Coal Creek and the north and south unnamed tributaries to Coal Creek, according to Smith, reported The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

“We have 67 miles of sanitary sewer in the city,” Smith said, reported The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. “I’m estimating that we probably have 85 miles of streets ― some of which have undersized storm drain systems buried in the ground, undersized inlet grates, and the rest is bar ditches, driveway culverts or street culverts.”

Every time Wagoner has done a paving project in the last five years, old culverts are replaced with new, bigger culverts or multiple culverts, resulting in the storm water flowing off of the street and/or out of people's yards. According to Smith this creates a safety issue.

A new ordinance was established in 2015 and since then almost 200 storm water permits have been issued.

According to Smith, there is probably another $7 million worth of storm water projects that need to be done in Wagoner. This is in addition to the $5 million Wagoner has already received.

A storm water utility fee on residents’ bills is going to be proposed to the Wagoner City Council by the end of the year, added Smith, reported The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

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