Washoe County to remove Swan Lake flood barriers and begin restoration along Lemmon Drive

by | Nov 15, 2021

Washoe County will begin the final removal of HESCO barriers along Lemmon Drive today, and restore the roadway slopes and stormwater ditches along the route.  

The work will start on the southern end of Lemmon Drive around Patrician Drive and work north over the next several months, removing flood barriers and restoring driveways, removing trash and waste materials, and restoring roadsides and stormwater ditches. 

Lemmon Drive will be reduced to single lane in work areas during the daytime, and residents should be prepared for detours. Crews will begin work daily at 8 a.m. and end around 3:30 p.m., progressing northward in sections to minimize the overall impact to drivers.  

“We are trying to minimize the impact to residents by starting our work after the usual morning commute and ending it before the afternoon commute, but residents should be prepared for some delays while we work on this area,” Bill Wardell, Project Manager, said. “The end result is going to be worth it, so we are asking residents to be patient, slow down for the field crew safety, and work with us.” 

Residents will begin to see crews staging in the area today, and can expect removal of materials to begin after Thanksgiving and continue through the end of the year. Residential driveways on either side of Idaho Street that were damaged or impacted by the flood response are scheduled to be repaired the first week of January. Work should be completed by the end of January. The work schedule has taken into account possible weather delays, and crews can continue to work through rain and cold, but will pause in the event of snow or ice storms.  

It is a priority for Washoe County to minimize waste taken to the landfill, so part of the contractor’s responsibility will be to repurpose the materials removed from the roadside. The HESCO barriers are not certifiable for further flood response, but the interior sand will be stockpiled for potential flood response in the future.  The exterior shells that are acceptable for non-flood response activities will be repurposed in other places such as a shooting range. 

Information on Swan Lake and flooding mitigation efforts can be found on the Washoe County website here.