$43 Million in Church Creek drainage recommendations published

$43 Million in Church Creek drainage recommendations published
March 19 17:42 2018 Print This Article

The City of Charleston recently published the recommendations provided by engineering firm Weston and Sampson in the Church Creek Drainage Basin Study. There are seven recommended engineering upgrades which will cost about $43 Million to implement. The study was completed in November, following months of field surveys, 14 public meetings, aerial photos and the use of the state of the art drainage software. The engineers learned a lot about the West Ashley basin by observing water flow during and after Tropical Storm Irma. These are the action items included in the report:

Tidal surge protection ($1.5 Million).  Install tidal gates at various points of the basin so that water may flow out with an incoming tide.

Pumping station ($26.7 Million). Install pump near West Ashley Circle so that stormwater runoff may be pumped directly to the Ashley River.  The plan includes a back-up diesel generator.

Create north basin reservoir ($3.9 Million).  Create reservoir in the undeveloped land north of the Village Green subdivision and divert the flow to the Ashley River.

Create wetlands overflow channel to protect Hickory Farms ($500,000).  Dig a channel along property easements to prevent back-flow into the Hickory Farms subdivision, which has experienced multiple flooding events since 2015.

Restore natural drainage flow from Lake Dotterer ($3.1 Million).  Construction of the Glenn McConnell Parkway altered the natural drainage flow from Lake Dotterer into the Stono River, causing flooding in the Forest Lakes and Providence Common subdivisions.  The plan calls for creating an outfall underneath McConnell Parkway and making improvements to existing culverts.

Upgrade ditch and culvert maintenance ($5 Million).  Many existing drainage systems are clogged with weeds and debris.  Clearing the systems will have a positive impact on drainage flow, particularly in the Springfield and Canterbury Woods subdivisions.  This step will require close cooperation between City of Charleston and Charleston County.

Divert flow from Grande Oaks to Stono River ($2.6 Million).  This project diverts stormwater runoff from now entering Church Creek to the Stono.

Stormwater fees were raised for City of Charleston water customers for 2018, which could be used for ditch and culvert maintenance.  Another potential funding source for the engineering upgrades is Charleston County’s $2.1 Billion transportation sales tax.  Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg has identified drainage as his top priority for 2018, although no money from the city’s 2018 budget specifically went to Church Creek Basin improvements.