Urban Drainage and Flood Control in Arvada

City of Arvada Acquisition and Removal of Valley View Mobile Home Park

Background

The Valley View Mobile Home Park was located totally within the 100-year floodplain of Ralston Creek at its confluence with Clear Creek. Ralston Creek has a drainage area of 91 square miles, and a 100-year peak discharge of almost 10,000 ft3 /sec at its mouth. The mobile home park had gradually been experiencing more frequent flooding as the upper basin became more fully developed. The existing channel through the mobile home park was not even capable of handling the 2-year flood, and the park had been flooded most recently in 1989 and 1991.

Project Description

In 1995, the City of Arvada embarked on the expansion of a major arterial street in the Ralston Creek floodplain upstream from the mobile home park. The project included construction of a 100-year capacity channel adjacent to the new road. In order to release the discharges from the channel the decision was made to acquire and relocate the mobile home park. In 1995, Arvada, in cooperation with the Urban Drainage & Flood Control District, entered into a purchase agreement with the owners of the park. The agreement called for the complete removal of the 72 tenant-occupied and 10 vacant mobile homes no later than June 1, 1996. Purchase price of the property was set at $1,575,000. Ownership of the mobile homes and subsequent responsibility to remove them from the site remained with the seller. The now vacant site was flooded again in 1997.

Arvada and the District have now begun the development of a city park on the site, which will become known as Gold Park, as this is believed to be the site where gold was first discovered in Colorado. This will be accomplished in conjunction with the needed drainage and flood control improvements. Other partners in the development of the park include the Jefferson County Open Space Department and the Colorado Historical Society. Construction of the first phase of the park project began in early 2000.

Benefits

When fully completed, this project will have developed a park celebrating the history of the area; while removing one of the greatest flood damage potential areas in the entire Denver region.

Project Cost

  • Acquisition of the mobile home park - $1,575,000
  • Gold Park Construction – Park Improvements - $3,500,000

Funding Sources

  • City of Arvada
  • Urban Drainage and Flood Control District
  • Jefferson County Open Space
  • Colorado Historical Society