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Cedar Rapids Prepared For River Crest (UPDATE)

Water levels against 3rd Avenue Bridge in Cedar Rapids
Carson / i107-1

Cedar Rapids is in a familiar situation as residents head to the river, worried about it’s rise.  According to the city, they are prepared for the Tuesday’s expected crest of over 17 feet.  But with more rain on the way, what happens if it crests higher?  How much are we prepared for? And how has the city been impacted so far?

Driving around the city, we’re seeing cement cylinders being placed over manholes, surrounded by sandbags.  It’s all part of the city’s prep for this all too current event of the rising river.  How current?  If the river crests at 17 feet as projected, it’d be the 5th time in 10 years we’ve been higher than 15 feet.  And for the time being, according to the city, measures are in place to handle up to 18 feet.  The staff is ready to respond quickly however if that number rises. (In comparison, 2008 crested at 31.2 feet and last summer crested at 18.23 feet.)

“There are currently no indications that the level would exceed the capabilities of the protection systems put in place by Public Works and Utilities crews.”

- Maria Johnson, City of Cedar Rapids

As previously reported, all the dam gates are open, and concrete barrels, cones, and sandbags have been set-up in high risk areas.  We’ve also begun seeing pumps put in place. Additionally, storm sewer plugs have been put in place, which may cause temporary street floods with heavy rainfall.  (According to CBS 2, there’s about a 20%-30% chance we could see some more rain tonight into tomorrow.)

Once again, we have seen road and boat ramp closures due to flood protection/safety concerns.

Road closures associated with rising river levels or flood protection set-up include:
- Ellis RD NW closed between 16th and 18th ST
- Otis RD SE by the river
- Fish CT SW off Old River RD SW
- Manhattan Park along Ellis RD NW
- A ST SW from 17th to 22nd Ave
- B ST SW from 17th to 21st Ave
- 18th Ave SW from A to C ST
- 19th Ave SW from A to C ST
- 20th Ave SW from A to C ST
- 21st Ave SW from A to C ST
- 22nd Ave SW from A to C ST
- 14th Ave SE from 3rd to 4th ST / One Lane closure at 2nd ST
- 4th ST SE from 12th to 14th Ave

Trail closures:
- Sac and Fox
- Prairie Park Fishery
- Sections of Cedar Trail
- The Cedar Valley Nature Trail under the 8th Ave. SE bridge
- Bike trail along A Street SW between 15th Avenue SW and the landfill
- the bridge on Boyson Trail near Donnelly Park (290 W. 8th Avenue) in Marion

Also, the Cedar Rapids/Linn County Solid Waste Agency’s yard waste, compost and recycling facility, located at 2250 A Street SW, Cedar Rapids, is operating under regular business hours but cannot be accessed from A Street SW. Customers can use the back entrance off C Street SW, which is a gravel road.

Flood Closures in Marion and Cedar Rapids

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