Flooding solution will be expensive

Flooding problems on Hilltop along Fairgrounds Boulevard, under Denny's restaurant and in the Shangri La area, could be alleviated with the proposed Railroad Diversion Channel.

The design study recently completed by Stantec Consulting would keep nearly all the East Bench drainage east of the Burlington Northern Santa Fe tracks north of Kingman to the airport.

The water would go into the Mohave Wash north of Thompson Avenue.

The big hurdle for the Railroad Diversion Channel is an estimated construction cost of more than $8.3 million.

Kingman receives an annual share of the Mohave County Flood Control District funds of about $460,000.

The county collects the money from property taxes and returns it to various cities and localities in proportional shares.

"There are some options to lower construction costs that would increase maintenance costs," City Engineer Pete Johnson said.

"The project is designed in sections so construction could be a piece at a time."

But the diversion channel is still a pricey investment to control floods in the Hualapai Basin and the city of Kingman.

Drainage from east, west and south comes through Kingman to the Mohave Wash.

The recently completed retention area at Eastern Street and Southern Avenue, named Monsoon Park, is an alternative method of flood control that would reduce the volume of water the diversion channel would need to carry.

Water runs off the East Bench area west to the railroad and under Andy Devine Avenue now.

The box culvert moves water to the Hilltop area and drains down Main Street and Fairgrounds Boulevard to the Mohave Wash just north of I-40.

Several homes in the area experience regular damage during major rainstorms.

Most drainage projects begin at the bottom of the hills.

In Kingman, that drainage is Mohave Channel.

Work is underway from I-40 north to Thompson Avenue to build a channel and line it with rock.

The Arizona Department of Transportation, Mohave County and the city of Kingman are each constructing a section of the Mohave Wash project.

Mohave County District 1 Supervisor Pete Byers said completion of the county portion of the Mohave Channel is a high priority for him.

A pathway for walking, riding bicycles and riding horses would be built when the channel work is completed.

Kingman City Planner Rob Owen said the new park on the bank of Mohave Channel would serve as a resting area for people using the new pathway.

The park is on Willow Street between Kino Avenue and Gordon Drive.

The city has no current method of financing an $8.3 million diversion channel but finances some smaller flood control measures each year.

The Monsoon Park retention basin is one of those projects.

It collects water during large storms and diverts the water north on Adams Street away from flooding on Hilltop.