Communities along Crow River prepare for flood season

Crow River flood preparations

Crow River flood preparations

While the temperatures outside feel nice Tuesday, they aren’t good news for areas worried about flooding.

That includes a portion of the border between Hennepin and Wright counties, where Delano and Rockford are preparing for the Crow River to possibly flood.

“We’re closely monitoring the River levels. Our thoughts and expectations are that we’ll fall a little bit short,” Rockford City Administrator Dan Madsen said.

“It looks like the trends are going down so I think that we’re looking OK,” Rockford Public Works Superintendent Trevor Brummer added.

KSTP’s Spring Flooding Guide

Currently, the Crow River sits just below six feet on the flood gauge in Rockford, and it’s expected to rise nearly eight more feet to 13.4 feet, which is the moderate flood stage, by Monday. Despite that projection, concerns remain rather low.

“We’ve really got a good plan that we’ve put together to be able to execute in the past, and we continue to use that as a template going forward,” Rockford City Engineer Steve Hegland said.

In nearby Delano, the river sits at 12 feet and is expected to rise another six feet. However, like in Rockford, the city is prepared and expecting to be OK.

“We’re set up pretty well right now. We’ve got all of our preventative measures pretty much set up,” Delano City Engineer Shawn Louwagie said.

A couple of things are also working in the communities’ favor. One is the fact that the Crow River flows south to north, meaning all of the snowmelt from northern Minnesota won’t impact the waterway. But the biggest factor is the fact that we had multiple weeks of thawing in the day and freezing overnight, which slowed the pace of snowmelt.

Still, Rockford and Delano will remain on standby as the river rises over the next week and they’ll see how it plays out.

“If you live by the river, just pay attention to the river levels. Respect it,” Louwagie reminded residents. “It can be a dangerous situation if it gets too high but, stay back.”