Sand Creek Stabilization at Platte Ave Complete

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Work to stabilize the stormwater channel along Sand Creek, protect the Platte Avenue Bridge and surrounding public and private properties from erosion and flooding is complete.

This 10-month stabilization project repaired approximately a half-mile section of Sand Creek directly south of the Platte Avenue Bridge filling and reshaping the creek, installing grouted boulder drop structures to safely step the creek down and rebuilding the natural habitat along the creek. The project raised the bottom of Sand Creek and regraded the banks back to a stable slope to prevent erosion and provide flood protection for up to a 100-year storm event through the half-mile improved section that will ultimately improve water quality for downstream communities.

The project is one of 71 identified projects through the City’s Inter-Governmental Agreement with Pueblo County is designed to enhance public safety, provide improved water detention, improve water quality, and reduce flows and the amount of sediment that flows downstream.

The project is partially funded through a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grant for hazard mitigation.  The grant funding is made available to the City through the 2013 Federal Disaster Declaration for damaging floods.  The FEMA Hazard Mitigation program provides funding for cost-effective post disaster projects to reduce or eliminate long-term risk to people and property from future disasters.  The City was able to apply and obtain the grant by showing how the channel project will reduce the long term risk to Platte Avenue, adjacent utilities, and property owners. 

In 2008, a major storm event in Sand Creek cut the channel bottom down by 15 feet under the Platte Ave bridge exposing and compromising the bottom of the bridge piers and critical utility lines crossing the creek.  In 2008, the City installed a large boulder drop structure immediately downstream of the bridge to prevent future erosion,  but the creek continued to drop further downstream requiring the City to repair and extend the drop structure deeper to prevent the bridge from being threatening again.  Since 2008, the bottom of Sand Creek downstream of Platte Avenue Bridge has continued to drop to a level that the sides of the channel eroded and have become unstable.

Project timeline:

Design Phase: 2016-2017

Design company: RESPEC

Construction Phase: January - October 2018

Construction company: Tezak Heavy Equipment

Total stormwater project cost: $6 million

FEMA grant = $3.9M

State match = $600,000

Local match = $1.5M