While this relates to Des Plaines River flooding rather than problems in the Fox River valley, I thought you might be interested in 8th congressional district Republican candidate’s approach to the issue. What follows is Ken Arnold’s press release:
Arnold Demands Fix to Des Plaines River Flooding – Provides Detailed Plan to Do It
Gurnee, Illinois: Republican Congressional Candidate Ken Arnold held an outdoor press conference today on the issue of Des Plaines River flooding. The press conference was at a ComEd right of way with electrical high tension wires as the backdrop along the nearby Des Plaines River.
At this press conference, Ken Arnold detailed a plan of his own development and design that is designed to materially prevent future flood damage along the entire DesPlaines River basin. The unveiled plan was complete with maps, right of way photos, topography elevations — and read as much like an engineering study as a political demand for action.
Mr. Arnold stated:
“In the last seven years we have had three major flood episodes directly costing tens of millions of dollars each time – a quarter Billion dollars in a decade! Besides this direct cost, is the cost of putting lives at risk. After so many floods, and so many years, this citizen demands action from our elected officials who have done nothing!”
He went on to add: “Since they have failed to creatively solve this problem, I’ve even give them the lowest cost roadmap to do so!”
Mr. Arnold’s plan, called the Des Plaines Spillway Act (DSA), specifies a 5.3 mile long spillway be constructed from just north of Gurnee to just north of Waukegan where waters would empty into Lake Michigan. The spillway, which miraculously fully follows an existing ComEd high tension wire right of way already cleared of structures, would be employed on an emergency basis to divert up to 75 percent of flood waters from the Des Plaines to Lake Michigan.
The spillway proposal specifies that in addition to alleviating the suffering and costs caused by the flooding of residences and businesses, the proposal would ensure, for homeland security purposes, that one of only three federal highways in Chicago leading up to Wisconsin evacuation sites would not be rendered impassable.
In two of the three most recent flood events, U.S. 41 was totally cut off due to flood waters under a low lying, railroad viaduct close to the Des Plaines River and not far from the outdoor press conference that was held.
Mr. Arnold states:
“If we had a terrorist event in Chicago making necessary an evacuation, I don’t want the politicians to say ‘If we had only known…’ as mass casualties occur from evacuating citizens stuck in stalled traffic along U.S. 41. This must never happen – and they have no excuse with my initiative now given them!”
Ken Arnold is running in the upcoming Republican Primary of February, 2008, and hopes to replace incumbent Democrat, Melissa Bean, as the U.S. Representative from the 8th Congressional District. The 8th District is composed of half of Lake and McHenry Counties along with far northwestern Cook County.
The Ken Arnold for Congress Campaign can be reached at 847-207-1167. Citizens may also visit his website, where other detailed and original ideas on major problems will continue to be posted, by logging onto www.ArnoldforCongress.com.
Arnold’s white paper on the subject can be found here. the map may be enlarged by clicking on it.