FARGO, ND – Sen. John Hoeven, Rep. Rick Berg and Brigadier General Michael Walsh, commander of the Mississippi Valley Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, met today in Fargo with local leaders and engineers to coordinate local, state and federal flood preparation efforts, and to review progress on the community’s flood protection measures.

The group reviewed several locations that have a high potential for requiring emergency measures, including 2nd Street directly in front of City Hall and the River Villa neighborhood on south 52nd Avenue east of University Drive. Emergency clay levees will likely be needed to protect these areas, including a large portion of downtown. The height and length of the emergency levees will depend on the final crest level, but the Corps estimates the need for approximately 50,000 cubic yards of clay in those locations. They also inspected Moorhead’s Rivershore Drive south of the I-94 from 20th to 32nd Avenue South where the city has made considerable improvements in the last year.

“This pre-flood assessment with General Walsh supports the tremendous coordination of people at the local, state and federal level on this year’s flood preparation effort,” Hoeven said. “Leaders in this community know how to fight a flood. Our goal is to support them with the federal resources and expertise they need, so that the people who live and work here can feel confident they’ll be protected this spring.”

Berg said advanced planning is vital. “A coordinated effort between community, state and federal officials will be a critical component of this year’s flood preparation,” Berg said. “Our first priority must be working to ensure that the communities at risk have the information and resources they need to prepare for this spring. Working with General Walsh and gaining insight from his pre-flood assessments will continue to be an integral part of this effort.”

As Mississippi Valley Division Commander, Walsh is responsible for the agency’s civil works program. In addition, he manages the Corps’ water resources program in the Mississippi River Valley, which extends from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico including portions of 12 states. Walsh oversees six district offices including the St. Paul, Minn., office, which manages the Corps’ flood response in eastern North Dakota.