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Project Update: Town of Bloomsburg (Columbia County) Flood Risk Management

Progress is continuing to be made on the Bloomsburg Flood Risk Management System project, which is on its way to completion by late summer of this year. Several key features of the project are nearing completion as construction continues to progress.

The project is beginning to take on its final appearance, with Floodbreak closure gates becoming operational as they near their final phase of installation. These devices are designed to close openings in the line of protection, such as roadways. They are integral to the integrity of the flood protection project as they automatically deploy as flood waters rise.

 

 

The project contains nine closure gates, with the largest Floodbreak closure gate in the country at the center of the project, measuring 12-feet high by 30-feet wide. While the primary source of flooding is the Susquehanna River, it is slow rising. Another, but different type of flood threat exists from nearby Fishing Creek. A 4-feet high Floodbreak closure gate, which is backed up by a 13.5-feet high stop log system, was installed across Sixth Street to protect against the fast rising flood waters of Fishing Creek. Another 9-feet high Floodbreak closure will be installed behind the Autoneum plant by the end of June. Other closures include two railroad closures with single swing gates, and two stop log closures.

Other major features of the system include upgraded storm sewer systems, four pumping stations, mechanically stabilized earth levees, full earth levees, and an H-pile flood wall supported by over 280 steel H-piles extended 23-feet underground in three foot diameter reinforced concrete caissons.

The $25 million project continues to evolve, as many complexities exist due to the various stakeholders involved, as well as natural and man-made constraints, including, utilities, sewers, and rights-of-way.