Scott County preparing for flooding

March 14, 2019 10:25 PM

Many communities along rivers are used to dealing with spring flooding. In Scott County, several cities sit along the Minnesota River, but few homes or businesses are near the water. That's because the county has worked for years to move them away from potential flood waters.

In Shakopee, the Scott County Road 101 bridge had historically been a trouble spot for flooding. But a new bridge opened in 2015, with an elevated land bridge leading up to it.


"It's elevated that bridge and the travel area of that bridge above a 1965 grade flood," said Scott Haas, Scott County Emergency Management director.

Despite the county's best efforts, Haas acknowledges some major river bridges will likely close, just like they did in the summer of 2018. They include the Highway 41 bridge near Shakopee, Scott County Road 9 bridge at Jordan, and Scott County Road 60 bridge at Blakeley.

More on spring flooding

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They had to be closed because of water blocking the roads leading up to the bridges. However, Haas thinks the closures could be for a different reason this year.

"The potential for flooding could actually come up to the level of the bridge itself and not just the low areas surrounding it," Haas said.

Blakeley is a tiny town that has been ravaged by floods over the decades, but now the threat of the Minnesota River is almost gone. Haas said the county purchased a group of flood-prone homes near the river, tore them down, and turned the land into green space. 

Scott County has more than 30 shelters on standby, and is working with the Red Cross and Salvation Army to put together meals and clean-up kits.

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