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Flood control to begin in Storey County

By Jeff DeLong • jdelong@rgj.com • June 17, 2009

The idea is to ensure planned flood-control improvements in the Reno-Sparks area don't raise the flood risk at Rainbow Bend in Storey County by sending more water downstream, officials said.

"We've got to build that protection, and we've got to do it on our own dime," said Naomi Duerr, director of the Truckee River Flood Project.

The $1.5 million project is one of several efforts being pursued by local government in advance of the $1.5 billion Truckee River Flood Project, largely federally funded. Another early project, construction of a $5.8 million levee and flood wall on the river just east of U.S. 395, should be finished this summer. The levee, the first structure to be built as part of the flood project, will protect a Wal-Mart Supercenter on Reno-Sparks Indian Colony land. Grading for Wal-Mart's access area started last week.

At Rainbow Bend, work involves building a half-mile-long walkway south of the river. The walkway, 18 inches to 2 feet high, could be completed this year and provide protection for the riverbank neighborhood, said Jay Aldean, deputy flood director. Subsequent work at Rainbow Bend in the larger federal project will include erection of a small flood wall, not visible from homes in the area, on the river's south bank.

Portions of the northern riverbank would be terraced to help floodwaters spread out during floods

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