Page images
PDF
EPUB

protect against the maximum flood of record would require levees having an estimated first cost of $111,100 and annual cost of $5,750 with estimated annual benefits of only $1,400. Accordinglly the district engineer concludes that the authorized projects for these two communities should be abandoned. He proposes modification of the project for local works to protect downtown Washington. The change is designed to reduce the amount of emergency closure work required and is presented for construction in two stages. Stage 1 provides for immediate undertaking of a small amount of levee and wall construction at Seventeenth Street NW., filling a small area near Lincoln Memorial, and raising a short section of P Street SW. The second stage, to be initiated after temporary war housing facilities are removed, consists of raising the grade of Seventeenth Street and park areas on each side. The total construction cost is estimated at $144,000 including $94,000 for the first stage. He considers it possible that, without this improvement, emergency closure of the protective works might not be successful during some major flood and that in event of failure the resulting damages could amount to as much as. $35,000,000. Therefore, he concludes that modification of the project as described is warranted.

11. Investigations of the district engineer show that the construction of reservoirs in the basin solely for flood control or of local works for the protection of agricultural areas in the comparatively narrow flood plains would not be economically justified at this time. Construction of local works for the protection of other urban areas has also been considered and no such works found warranted except at Waynesboro, Va. Among the communities studied for such protection is Keyser, W. Va., on the North Branch of Potomac River. A system of levees, walls, channel improvements, and related works to protect this area against floods of record has an estimated first cost of $969,400 and annual cost of $48,500, as compared with estimated average annual benefits of $4,700, clearly indicating a lack of economic justification. The district engineer's plan for protecting Waynesboro from a flood flow of 35,000 cubic feet per second and stage 6 feet higher than the maximum of recent record has an estimated cost to the United States of $1,431.000 for construction of levees and walls, channel excavation, a pressure conduit to carry the flow of Spring Run, pumping plants and bridge changes, and an estimated first cost to local interests of $297,000 for lands, utility, highway, and railroad changes, sewer works, and lengthening of a small dam. Total average annual costs and benefits are estimated at $84,300 and $91,000, respectively, a ratio of costs to benefits of 1 to 1.08.

12. The district engineer presents a comprehensive reservoir plan for the basin to develop hydroelectric power, afford flood control, and provide related benefits. It includes dams at 14 sites and contemplates construction in 11 stages, as follows:

[blocks in formation]

127.9
115.7
124.4

5.9

Riverbend..

Potomac.
Chain Bridge..... ....do...
Bear Island... credo..
Millville..... Shenandoah
Springfield.... South Branch
Harpers Ferry.---

Potomac....
Edes Fort and Cacapon

Pinesburg. || Potomac...
Patterson Creek, 11Patterson Creek.

Keyser, and Or- North Branch..
leans.

Potomac......
Rockymarsh Run Potomac....
Royal Glen...---

South Branch..
Brocks Gap.. . North Fork Shenan-

doah.

[blocks in formation]

5.0

170.5

4.8 212.8

2. 7

[blocks in formation]

43. 9 256.4 195. 3 73. 1 90.5

33, 890,000
7, 190,000
8,930, 000
6, 290, 000

10... 11..

[blocks in formation]

Total.....

235, 720,000

11,855, 000

15, 712,000

The power plants of the system as a whole would have a dependable capacity of 574,500 kilowatts at 30 percent load factor. The estimated system annual output of primary power is 1,510,000,000 kilowatt-hours and of secondary power 781,000,000 kilowatt-hours. With the reservoirs through stage 8 of the plan in operation and commencing with full power pools, the district engineer indicates that the flow of the largest flood of record at Washington could have been reduced from 484,000 to 220,000 cubic feet per second and the maximum stage by about 7.6 feet.

13. Construction and annual cost for completing Savage River Dam are estimated by the district engineer at $1,180,000 and $68,000, respectively. Annual

benefits are computed at $47,000 for pollution abatement and low-flow improve ment and $24,000 for increase in dependable output at the proposed downstream plants of the comprehensive plan, a total of $71,000, which indicates a favorable ratio of annual costs to benefits of 1 to 1.04,

14. The district engineer recommends construction of the comprehensive reservoir plan over a period of about 20 years; local protection works for Waynesboro, Va., subject to local cooperation; further local projection works for Washington, D. C., as described; completion of Savage River Dam, provided local interests contribute $200,000 toward the cost, hold the United States free from damages due to the construction, and agree to maintain and operate the works in accordance with prescribed regulations; and abandonment of the existing flood-control projects for Moorefield, W. Va., and Harpers Ferry, W. Va., and of the Arlington Experimental Farm section of the project for Washington, D.C. The division engineer concurs in general in the views and recommendations of the district engineer.

15. The Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors afforded local interests an opportunity to express their views at a public hearing in Washington, D. C. The testimony and information presented show that local interests are preponderantly opposed to the plan except for provision of the local flood protection works and completion of Savage River Dam. Residents of the area pointed out that the reservoirs would inundate farm lands, historic sites, and scenic areas, and expressed the view that recreational opportunities would be reduced and that fishing and wildlife interests would be adversely affected. In view of the objections presented, the Board concludes that the comprehensive plan should not be approved at this time but that Waynesboro, Va., should be afforded flood protection by local works, that additional local protection works should be provided at Washington, D. C., and that the latter should include appropriate landscaping and a removable closure at Seventeenth Street NW. instead of raising the grade of this street as proposed by the district engineer. To provide for this change in the plan, it increases the estimated first cost for the work at Washington, D. C., to $500.000 and considers this expenditure warranted for the more dependable protection which would be afforded. As to completion of Savage River Dam, it is noted that the expenditure required cannot be justified unless downstream hydroelectric power plants are also constructed to make use of the resulting increase in low water flows. The Board recommends the local protection works for Waynesboro, Va., subject to appropriate conditions of local cooperation; additional local protection works for downtown Washington, D. C., in general accordance with the plans of the district engineer but modified as described ; elimination of the protective works for Arlington Experimental Farm from the existing flood-control project for Washington, D. C.; and abandonment of the existing flood-control projects for Moorefield, W. Va., and Harpers Ferry, W. Va.

16. After careful consideration, I concur generally in the views of the Board and accordingly recommend: (1) The construction of local flood-protection works at Waynesboro, Va., generally in accordance with the plans of the district engineer and with such modifications as in the discretion of the Secretary of War and the Chief of Engineers may be advisable, at an estimated cost to the United States of $1,431,000, subject to the conditions that responsible local agencies furnish assurances satisfactory to the Secretary of War that they will provide without cost to the United States all lands, easments, and rights-ofway necessary for the construction of the project; hold and save the United States free from damages due to the construction works; and maintain and operate all the works after completion in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Secretary of War; (2) modification of the existing flood-control project for Washington, D. C., to eliminate the protective works for Arlington Experimental Farm, and to provide for protection of the downtown area substantially as recommended by the district engineer but modified (a) as may be found desirable by the Chief of Engineers to conform to future landscaping of the Mall after the removal of temporary buildings and (b) to provide a removable closure at Seventeenth Street in lieu of raising the grade of the street, the structure to be designed in consultation with the Director, National Park Service, and approved by the Commission of Fine Arts, at an estimated cost to the United States of $500,000 for construction and $5,000 annually for maintenance and operation; and (3) abandonment of the existing flood-control projects for Moorefield, W. Va., and Harpers Ferry, W. Va.

R. A. WHEELER,
Lieutenant General,

Chief of Engineers.

COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA,
VIRGINIA STATE PLANNING BOARD,

Richmond, February 12, 1946. CHIEF OF ENGINEERS,

United States Army Engineers, Washington 25, D. C. DEAR SIR: Complying with your request of October 15 for recommendations and comments on the War Department's report on the Potomac River, the Virginia State Planning Board strongly recommends that the flood-control project for the town of Waynesboro, Va., be approved and constructed as recommended by the Corps of Army Engineers. This recommendation is made with the understanding that the council of the town of Waynesboro will cooperate in the construction of the project to the extent of the town's ability in keeping with the resolution adopted by the council of the town of Waynesboro on April 25, 1944.

The planning board is advised by the town manager of the town of Waynesboro that the council of the town of Waynesboro strongly recommends favorable action on this project. Very truly yours,

RAYMOND V. LONG, Director. The CHAIRMAN. Are there any other opponents or proponents?

(April 10, 1946) The CHAIRMAN. I have already stated that Hon. Willis Robertson is very much in favor of the Waynesboro local protective works, on which the Chief of Engineers testified yesterday.

Do you have any witnesses?

Mr. ROBERTSON. My witnesses are here, and it will not take but 1 minute of your time.

The CHAIRMAN. All right, you may proceed. STATEMENT OF HON. WILLIS ROBERTSON, REPRESENTATIVE IN

CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF VIRGINIA Mr. ROBERTSON. It is a straight flood-control proposition. It is relatively a minor one, but it means a lot to a small town. We had a flood in 1942 that did one and one-half million dollars worth of damage, and that is more than this whole project will cost.

As I wrote you yesterday, we did not know that it would be reached yesterday. So I sent you that letter saying that so far as we knew, everybody in that community is for this project.

I take pleasure in presenting to you, to make a very brief statement on behalf of the citizens of Waynesboro, I. G. Vass, city manager.

The CHAIRMAN. We are delighted to have you here. We know Mr. Robertson is interested in this matter. He has had many conferences with the chairman of the committee. The project has been favorably recommended by the Chief of Engineers.

I should like to also mention in this connection that the only reservoir project that this committee is considering in the Commonwealth of Virginia is the reservoir project for the protection of the city of Fredericksburg, and the 16 or 17 reservoirs are not being considered by the committee at this time.

We will be very glad to have your statement. Do you favor or oppose it?

STATEMENT BY I. G. VASS, CITY MANAGER, WAYNESBORO, VA.

Mr. Vass. This has nothing to do with the reservoir. There is no opposition to it. I am in favor of it. So far as I know, there is not any opposition at all to this project.

The CHAIRMAN. Do you live in Waynesboro?
Mr. Vass. I am the city manager of Waynesboro.

The CHAIRMAN. What is the population of Waynesboro?
Mr. Vass. We have about 10,000.
The CHAIRMAN. Is that an apple country?
Mr. Vass. Yes, sir; it is quite an apple country. Incidentally, the
trees are very beautiful: st at this particular time.

Mr. ROBERTSON. Mr. Vass, is this improvement needed there? Mr. Vass. The improvement is needed very badly. The du Pont Co. has a plant there that they have invested some twelve or fifteen million dollars in and are now spending an additional ten or twelve million dollars. That plant lies in this flooded area.

The CHAIRMAN. You understand you are required to provide the same local rights-of-way and easements required on all other projects? Mr. Vass. Yes, sir. The CHAIRMAN. We are glad to have had you here this morning.

Mr. CHAIRMAN. have about' e populatioWaynesbe

(Thursday, May 2, 1946)

CUMBERLAND, MD., FLOOD-CONTROL PROJECT

STATEMENT OF HON. J. GLENN BEALL, A REPRESENTATIVE IN

CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF MARYLAND The CHAIRMAN. You are here on behalf of what matter? Mr. BEALL. I am here on behalf of the Cumberland, Md., floodcontrol project. In 1936 the Congress authorized $1,000,000 to be spent at Cumberland, Md., for flood prevention, and the district engineers recently made a resurvey of that area and they made a new plan of flood control up there in which it developed that the expenditures will be some $7,000,000 rather than $1,000,000; and I would like to ask permission at this time that General Crawford and the Army engineers submit a statement in the record showing the need and the justification for this additional expenditure.

The CHAIRMAN. General Crawford, as I recall, the act of June 22, 1936, authorized an improvement at Cumberland, Md., and like a good many projects, as indicated by Mr. Beall, I take it we did not give as careful consideration in that first flood-control act, because we did not have before us the plans and investigations of the engineers, that being an emergency and the work being intended primarily to take care of that emergency. I would be glad to have any statement that you care to submit. Was that work ever constructed ? General CRAWFORD. No, sir.

The CHAIRMAN. What is the purpose of the project? General CRAWFORD. It was a flood-control project, sir. The CHAIRMAN. What was the nature of it? Was it reservoirs ? General CRAWFORD. No, sir; it was a local protection program. Could I have the representative of the Washington district, Colonel Bird, give testimony on this project?

Colonel Bird. I will ask Mr. Birrell, senior engineer, to speak.

STATEMENT OF D. V. C. BIRRELL, SENIOR ENGINEER, ARMY

ENGINEERS

The CHAIRMAN. What was the project authorized for Cumberland? Mr. BIRRELL. The project originally authorized consisted of a diversion channel on the North Branch of the Potomac River through Ridgeley, W. Va.; the removal of an existing dam built for the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal, which provided water for the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal; and its reconstruction upstream on the North Branch of the Potomac River in order to provide water for local industry.

The CHAIRMAN. Who had to furnish the right-of-way for that diversion channel under the terms of the act ?

Mr. BIRRELL. Local interests were to provide it for local protection works but not for the channel diversion, sir.

The CHAIRMAN. Did they furnish it; and if not, why not? Mr. BIRRELL. No, sir; the project was never constructed becauso the project report that was submitted at that time did not prove to be adequate in the light of the flood which occurred after the preparation of the report.

The CHAIRMAN. Now, what modification of that did you recommend ?

Mr. BIRRELL. The revised project report extends the limits of the protective works which are necessary as revealed in the light of the 1936 flood, and also because of the increase in the flood estimates for which provision should be made, and also to accommodate structures to the requirements of local facilities, streets, roads, bridges, and so forth.

The CHAIRMAN. Now, what will this work consist of? Mr. BIRRELL. It will consist of channel improvements, flood walls, and levees, sir.

The CHAIRMAN. What channel? Who furnishes the lands for the channel and where is it located ?

Mr. BIRRELL. The conditions of local cooperation for the channel portion of the project would be as prescribed in the Flood Control Act of 1936 and as modified in the act of 1938. The channel improvement portion of the project extends from the Knobly Mountain Tunnel railroad bridge crossing of the North Branch of the Potomac below Cumberland to the mouth of Wills Creek and up Wills Creek for the extent of the project for that portion lying between the channel walls.

The CHAIRMAN. You understand that that law has been changed. Mr. BIRRELL. Yes; but, as I understand, this project is covered by the provisions of the original act..

The CHAIRMAN. We had to change the law; is that right or wrong? The local interests now have to furnish lands and rights for channelization.

Mr. BEARD. Under the 1938 act the Federal Government furnishes the right-of-way for a channel improvement, sir.

The CHAIRMAN. Under the 1936 act? Mr. Beard. The 1938 act, sir, also applied to projects authorized in the 1936 act.

The CHAIRMAN. I know we changed the law in 1938 and 1941. Mr. BEARD. You changed the law for future projects, but did not repeal the law in regard to projects already authorized.

« PreviousContinue »