US Army Corps of Engineers
Rock Island District Website

Project Background

In June 2008, the city of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was devastated by a flood of record proportions. More than 1,300 city blocks of the City were flooded. The floodwaters covered 10 square miles and caused an estimated $2.4 billion in damages. 

On April 5, 2006, Congress authorized a feasibility study and a Feasibility Cost Share Agreement was signed May 30, 2008. The damaged property inventory for the Feasibility Study counted 7,846 properties damaged by the flood including, 6,865 residential properties, 754 commercial/industrial properties and 227 public properties. The damaged public properties included the water pollution control facility, police station, potable water wells, wastewater collection system, City Hall, Linn County correctional center and courthouse, along with many other critical infrastructure elements. 

Following the study, the Corps released a Feasibility Report that presented several alternatives for flood risk management strategies. In the report, the National Economic Development (NED) Plan - Alternative 4-C was listed as the recommended plan. Alternative 4-C provided protection along the east bank of the Cedar River and included earthen levees, floodwalls, and closure structures for a total of 3.15 miles. This option had a benefit to cost ratio of 1.2 at 4.125% and 0.78 at 7.00% and was endorsed by the city of Cedar Rapids as part of their larger comprehensive Flood Risk Management Plan along both river banks. 

The Chief's Report was signed Jan. 27, 2011 and transmitted to Office of Management and Budget and Congress. 

A Design Agreement was executed Dec. 21, 2010 and preconstruction, engineering and design (PED) began. 

The project was authorized for construction in the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) of 2014.

The project was appropriated $117,480,000 on August 1, 2018 for construction through the Bi-Partisan Budget Act of 2018 (PL 155-123), also known as Long-term Disaster Recovery Supplemental Funding.  This funding is to be used to complete design and construct the entirety of the east side flood protection project.