Limiting a city's floodplain

Due to lack of capacity for Westerly Creek in Aurora, Colorado, a large shallow floodplain was expected to occur over a several block swath of the city. We were originally contracted to enlarge the nearby Canterbury Pond to detain more storm flows, but upon detailed analysis determined that the enlargement would not achieve the project's goal of reducing or eliminating the floodplain spill.

In the initial stage of the project, our in-house survey team used our Riegl VZ-400i terrestrial lidar scanner to collect high-resolution and high-accuracy data over the site.

We also used a combination of Total Station and VRS to pick up site utilities, which allowed us to see into and survey the existing box culverts.

This site data helped us to design two box culverts - one 6’ x 6’ and the other 12’ x 6’ - to join with an existing 8’ x 6’ box culvert, along with a special inlet, to capture and convey flow and eliminate the spill. This configuration allowed existing box culverts under a major roadway to be used rather than acquiring adjacent property and constructing new large box culverts under the street.

The design included a special junction structure and a special safety rack and inlet to capture and convey flow and eliminate the spill.

Deb Ohlinger
Group Leader
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