Water study presented to city council

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By Andrea Cordle
Grove City Editor

Flooding in certain parts of Grove City have been a problem for many residents and city leaders are reviewing ways to alleviate the water issues.

At the Oct. 18 meeting, Grove City Council listened to a stormwater evaluation presentation from engineers at EMH&T. Mike Keller, with the firm, said they studied neighborhoods in the older Grove City area, west of Hoover Road, as well as areas within the Grove City Creek and West Water Run watersheds.

“This is where the majority of the flooding is reported,” said Keller.

Keller said flooding is common in older, urban areas because the storm sewers were constructed in the 1960s or earlier.

According to the engineer’s report, there have been more than 30 significant rain events over the past 15 years in the study area. In March of 2020, more than four inches of rain fell in just over 24 hours. In May 2020, more than three inches fell in 32 hours, and in July of the same year, 2.8 inches of rain came down in one hour.

“We’ve had three pretty significant rain events in the past few years,” said Keller.

Just a few months ago, downtown streets were flooded from a quick, heavy rain event.
Engineers have proposed a few stormwater improvement projects. One such project would be to replace 1,037 linear feet of 12-inch to 18-inch storm sewer lines with 18 to 24-inch storm sewer lines around Security and La Rosa drives near Columbus Street. Engineers have reported flooding in this area resulting from sewer capacity limitations. This proposed sewer replacement would run around $1.2 million.

The Kingston Avenue area also sees urban flooding from limited sewer capacity. The EMH&T report suggests replacing the 30-inch storm sewer with a 36-inch storm sewer. This would cost approximately $300,000.

Stormwater improvements east of Haughn Road, at Sawyer Court, were also recommended. Engineers proposed a new sewer outlet and stream improvements. This project would involve easement acquisition and would run the city around $400,000. That cost does not include land acquisitions.

“We see the problem,” said councilman Randy Holt. “Now, we have options and possible solutions.”

Since 2000, the city has made over $13 million in investments into the sanitary and stormwater systems. Last year, the city appropriated $200,000 for a sewer backup protection program that helps property owners with water in their basement. This program brings older properties into city code compliance and/or provides additional protection from flooding in basements. In the spring of 2020, nearly 100 residents requested assistance from the program after water was reported in their basement.

According to Keller, the engineers will now take comments and concerns from council members and city officials before moving forward with a draft report.

For more information on water management, visit grovecityohio.gov.

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