In March, the City of Pierre committed to improving storm water drainage in southeast Pierre. In early August, the drainage project was completed. Yesterday, the improvement successfully mitigated localized flooding near the PILC (Pierre Indian Learning Center) campus.
Pierre City Engineer John Childs says that Monday’s massive downpour tested the project.
“The area got about 2.5 inches of rain in less than 45 minutes,” said Childs. “I’m very happy to say that the drainage system the City installed did exactly what it was supposed to do. It drastically reduced flooding near the PILC campus and surrounding residential neighborhood.”
Thanks to the newly installed drainage system, the storm water that historically flowed through the PILC neighborhood was diverted from the south side of Highway 34 to a natural drainage channel east of the PILC dormitories. From there, the water naturally filters into the Missouri River.
“It’s hard to get people excited about storm water infrastructure projects,” said Pierre Mayor Steve Harding. “This drainage system is the kind of investment the City makes each year to improve our community and directly and positively impact the people who live here.”
The City has made other recent storm water drainage improvements to the culvert under Church Street, to a massive storm water culvert located under River Road, as well as drainage work near East Pleasant and South Pierre Street.
“When you have a community built on a hillside, there are going to be storm water challenges,” said Childs. “I’m pleased our recent investments are working as intended and helping mitigate localized flooding.”