Star Valley has water on the brain. No, not the kind you drink, but the stuff that roars through the streambeds nearly every year, eroding roads and yards.
At Tuesday night’s council meeting, the council will discuss contracting with engineering firm Mountain Standard Inc. to design three, storm water drainage passages around town. If the council approves all three projects, it would cost the town nearly $100,000 in study and design fees.
The first area for a proposed drainage way is at Valley Road and Goat Camp Wash. A conveyance structure would be placed within the existing public right-of-way on Valley Road and should not affect property owners. A survey of the area coupled with hydraulic analysis and improvement plans and specifications would cost the town $28,000.
Similar surveys of Sprague Ranch Road and Houston Creek, as well as Old Moonlight Drive and Houston Creek, are also being considered. The studies would cost $36,000 and $31,000 respectively.
The council will also discuss using detention basins to mitigate flooding.
The Floodwater Taskforce recommends conducting a $5,000 engineering study through Mountain Standard. Mountain Standard will evaluate installing two detention basins north of town. Possible locations of the basins include near Houston Creek, Mayfield Canyon and Schoolhouse Canyon.
“It is times like this when there has been little rain that we need to put into place the strategies and action plans that will protect us from future flooding,” the taskforce said in a town newsletter.
While the town looks at costly ways to mitigate future flooding, the taskforce is considering short-term solutions such as removing debris from waterways.
The taskforce members explained that water used to flow through the town in natural channels. However, with growth and development, manmade obstructions began to force water into new channels.
“Over time, heavy rains began to force erosion of the banks, cresting of the channel ways and restriction of the water flow in some areas,” the taskforce said. “As a result, homes, property and lives are being threatened by either fast-moving and out of control water flow or water that is blocked by obstacles and is flow-restricted.”
The fastest and cheapest way to ebb the threat of flooding is to remove debris clogging the waterways.
The taskforce is interested in learning if homeowners want to help clear debris near their property. They propose mailing a questionnaire to residents. This would cost at least $115 in mailing fees, plus the cost of paper.
The council will discuss these issues beginning at 6:30 p.m., Nov. 3 at the Star Valley Town Hall.