Truckee Meadows Flood Control Project
As the sole outlet for Lake Tahoe, the Truckee River offers a range of recreational activities, including fishing, river rafting, kayaking and sightseeing, are an integral part of the cities along its path. Every 5 to 10 years, that most scenic beauty is replaced with the threat and reality of devastating floods. The Reno-Sparks metropolitan area combined has a population of nearly half a million residents and is known informally as Truckee Meadows.
The USACE Sacramento District, the cities of Reno and Sparks, and Washoe County are collaborating on this important project. The USACE is the federal sponsor, while the three localities have formed the Truckee River Flood Management Authority (TRFMA). Initially, the USACE investigated flood damage reduction along with ecosystem restoration and recreation purposes. The following year, the region experienced its worst recorded flood event. The project was re-scoped to focus on flood risk management and confined to a smaller footprint completely within Truckee Meadows. Our team developed a new, locally-preferred plan with a goal to provide 100-year-level flood protection and maximize the benefit-cost ratio so the project could potentially be recommended to Congress for funding support. This first phase of the project was completed under and extremely aggressive schedule. Our team provided cost estimate, economics and engineering report, and draft environmental impact statement. In the second phase, we created a plan that added flood risk features in the reach through downtown Reno resulting in a $446 million project with an expected 8.5 miles of flood control improvements for the area.
Many residents in the Reno-Sparks area view this project as a critical element in securing a vibrant and livable future.