12 September 2008

Stupid Zones Revisited

I have a new entry in my Daily Kos diary entitled Stupid Zones Revisited, that examines what policy responses we should make to deal with future threats like Hurricanes Ike, Gustav and Katrina. At a broader level, it argues that we need to try to live in better harmony with nature, rather than assuming that we can conquer it, both in how we build and how we live. It uses Denver's history of dealing with flooding in the South Platte River and Cherry Creek as a model.


Michael Malak said...

Our own fair neighborhood of West Washington Park will be like the Lower Ninth if Chatfield fails.

Andrew Oh-Willeke said...

Not really. I've actually examined dam failure scenarios pretty closely. Even a bad South Platte flood would be unlikely to get much past Broadway, and a Cherry Creek flood probably wouldn't get much past 1st or in a worse case scenario, maybe Center. West Wash is actually built on a Hill that hits its peak in the vicinity of Downing Street. Gates Rubber might have trouble, but further up the Hill, not so much. Every few feet of flood level requires vastly more water because the flood plain gets much wider as you go up.

The most vulnerable place in the respective flood plains, IMHO, is Denver Health, which would be impacted with only a modest overflow from the canal in which the Cherry Creek bike path sits. Denver Water would also be vulnerable.

Andrew Oh-Willeke said...

Diary rescued. Hurray!