September 11, 2011
by John Kiljan
The US Army Corps of Engineers has issued a notice soliciting comments from the public for this winter’s Ralston Creek channel improvements along Brooks Drive. The Corps is responsible for protecting water quality and approving flood control projects. A public comment period is required before the Corps issues its project approval document known as a “Section 404 Permit.”
The full announcement can be seen at the US Army Corps of Engineers Omaha District website at
Although the allowable scope of comments is pretty broad, this is probably not the place for CLRC members to be asking for a swimming pool. The descriptor in the notice reads, “All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, wetlands, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people.” Comments must be writing.
Even if you don’t plan to comment, the site is worth a visit because it has a nearly complete set of engineering plans for the drainage work that have not previously been available. They show things such as the property takings along the south side of the creek, the amount of dirt to be excavated within the park, how steep the slopes will be, what trees are likely to be removed and many other landscaping details. Traffic and parking details can be seen as well, e.g., the center through lane on Garrison Street at Ralston Road will be combined with the right turn lane.
Be patient. This is a large file with many overlays and some of the most interesting views are farther down in the document.
WHERE TO FIND OUT MORE
The Citizens for a Livable Ralston Community will post more information online on its website at http://www.ralstoncommunity.org/ as it becomes available.
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