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Portion of Green River Trail closes in Kent for levee work

Crews will close a portion of the Green River Trail the rest of this year in Kent to install a flood wall along the Briscoe-Desimone levee similar to this one along the Boeing levee. - COURTESY PHOTO, City of Kent
Crews will close a portion of the Green River Trail the rest of this year in Kent to install a flood wall along the Briscoe-Desimone levee similar to this one along the Boeing levee.
— image credit: COURTESY PHOTO, City of Kent

Kent city officials have shut down the popular Green River Trail between South 180th Street and South 200th Street for levee construction.

The trail is expected to be closed until December, said Ken Langholz, city engineering supervisor. The trail will detour along the Interurban Trail and South 196th Street.

Crews are repairing the Briscoe-Desimone levee along the Green River that protects portions of Kent, Tukwila and Renton from flooding.

"There are four reaches (or sections) of the Briscoe-Desimone levee that need to be reconstructed in order to meet FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) accreditation requirements," Langholz said in an email. "The current project is along reaches 2 and 3. Reaches 1 and 4 will be constructed in 2015."

A state grant of $7 million and King County Flood Control District funds will pay for levee repairs and a second project next year along the levee. Engineers estimate the total repair cost at about $18 million. The initial project will cost $6.7 million.

Crews will install flood walls an estimated 30 to 40 feet into the ground. About six feet of the wall will be above ground, similar to work done on the Boeing levee next to the Three Friends Fishing Hole just south of South 200th Street.

The project includes constructing setback flood walls along two sections of the levee between South 189th Street and South 194th Street that do not meet stability criteria; removing large trees and roots that could cause damage to the levees; and removing ivy and other ground cover that can prevent routine inspections.

The projects also include the city submitting applications to FEMA to certify the levee so properties are removed from the Kent Valley floodplains and property owners are no longer required to buy flood insurance.

For more information about the levee project, go to kentwa.gov/content.aspx?id=19900.

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