ELLINWOOD - No one in Ellinwood is complaining about the rain the area has received in the past 48 hours, but it has temporarily stopped the KDOT project along Santa Fe Ave. where storm sewers are being updated and new concrete is being poured.
“Inclement weather is affecting construction,” said Zach Oswald, KDOT public affairs manager. “Crews are on site pumping water to clear the construction area and keep water flow under control.”
The project engineer, he said, anticipates work resuming when the rain subsides.
Chris Komarek, Ellinwood city manager, is confident that unless the area receives more than 4-5 inches of rain, there should be no problem with flooding other than in a few isolated spots in town where water tends to accumulate.
One of those areas is between Humboldt and Kennedy streets and between West First Street and Santa Fe Ave. The block is shared by the city power plant, as well as the Ellinwood Emergency Medical Services building. Early Wednesday afternoon, roadblocks were posted keeping drivers out of the road where water had nearly reached the top of the curb.
“It’s higher than normal right now due to the work being done on storm sewers in conjunction with the ongoing highway project,” he said.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the area had received between 1.5-2 inches, according to data from the Big Bend Groundwater Management District Station 5.
Meanwhile, north of town, the slew where Lakin Township volunteers and Ellinwood city personnel partnered in the fall to remove debris contained runoff to the west side of the bridge on North Hisch Avenue north of West Seventh Street. On the east side of the bridge, water accumulated and was beginning to fill the slew that would carry it east of the city.
Piles over 10-feet high of tree roots and branches dot the slew at intervals, indicators of what was once a choked run that created flooding issues for residents to the west.