MSD begins to close floodwall openings to keep Louisville dry

MSD begins to close floodwall openings to keep Louisville dry
MSD crews installed the floodwall closure at 10th St. on Feb. 23.

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - As the Ohio River continues to rise, two parts of the floodwall designed to keep Louisville dry are being closed off.

Starting Friday morning, Metropolitan Sewer District crews began work to install floodwall closures at 10th and 27th streets. At any one particular spot, the installation of the closure to the opening that allows drivers and pedestrians to pass through is a six-hour process.

Projections show the Ohio River will crest early next week at nearly 35 feet on the upper gauge and almost 66 feet on the lower gauge. Normal pool on the upper gauge is 12 feet. Low stage on the lower is nine feet.

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By the end of the day, MSD will have activated all 16 of its flood pumping stations. Additionally, more floodwall roadway closures may also be installed. Closures at 2nd and Bingham Way are next in line to close.

MSD protects more than 200,000 people, 87,000 homes and $24 billion in property throughout 110 square miles of Louisville Metro. It includes 29 miles of floodwall and earthen levee, 16 flood pumping stations, nearly 150 floodgates and 80 flood wall closures.

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Where creeks and storm drains pass through the floodwall, gates can be closed to keep the river from flowing up the streams, and large pumps at the flood pumping stations are used to lift the water from the creeks into the river. Additional gates and pumping stations keep the river from backing up through storm drains, and pump the stormwater into the river.

MSD has been responsible for the Flood Protection System since 1987. If it can be performed safely MSD asks for people to assist in clearing clogged storm drains. If there is a safety concern, MSD by dialing 311.

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