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Northern Arizona residents get update on flood mitigation plan

Posted at 9:58 PM, Mar 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-30 01:31:32-04

FLAGSTAFF, AZ — First came fire, then followed an unforgettable flood.

A feasibility study done by the City of Flagstaff after flooding tore through neighborhoods in the Museum Fire burn scar is expected to be done early next month.

Just under 2,000 acres burned north of Flagstaff in July of 2019 in the Museum Fire. The U.S. Forest Service determined an excavator struck a rock and sparked the blaze.

Two years later, at least two inches of rain came down in just a matter of minutes, right on top of the Museum Fire Burn Scar.

Dozens of homes downhill were damaged in the flood as well as several public buildings costing millions.

The damage amount didn't meet FEMA Assistance standards leaving mostly local and state officials to recover.

On Tuesday, city, county, and state officials shared progress with the flood mitigation plan. A feasibility study is in its final review before being published to the public.

Channels and inlets along the flood path are expected to be done before Monsoon season including detention basins around the Killip School that flooded.

"That project is on schedule to still be delivered prior to the opening of school and prior to our Monsoon season of '22," said Scott Overton, Flagstaff Public works director.

Sirens are to be installed to notify when floods are coming, and sandbags will be available to be refreshed.

"Most people don't know when services will be available," said Sharon during public comment.

For those who lived through the flood, some are looking for help and assurance before the next flood. Some feel more needs to be done.

"I would contend that lifting 300 sandbags is not an activity that is considered routine," she said.

The city also discussed a call center to take questions and route people to the right service.

Find status updates on Museum Flood projects online here.