Burlington celebrates completion of flood protection efforts

Burlington celebrates completion of flood protection efforts
Published: Sep. 19, 2023 at 11:46 PM CDT
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BURLINGTON, N.D. (KMOT) – Twelve years after the devastating impacts of the Souris River flood, the city of Burlington has completed its flood protection efforts.

It’s the first town along the Souris River Basin to be fully protected against a 2011-type event.

Key components of the flood protection efforts in Burlington included the construction of earthen levees along the river, as well as the complete reconstruction of the Colton Avenue Bridge.

The cost of all the work came in at roughly $40 million.

Leadership with the project joined with Burlington citizens Tuesday in celebrating the project with a community barbecue.

David Ashley, chair of the Souris River Joint Board, said in the wake of the flood, Burlington was very proactive in getting the ball rolling on flood protection.

“It’s been a been a very challenging thing because a lot of construction going on but the thing is we started the construction in 2019 and now we’re completing it and 2023 and that’s quite significant, and that speaks well to the cooperation of the community,” said Ashley.

Your News Leader spoke with some longtime Burlington residents, some of whom lived through the floods of 1969 and 2011, on what this day means to them.

“The mayor we had in 2011, they took the bull by the horns, so to speak, and Burlington was the first one that was doing significant changes. And that has made a big difference,” said Doris Johansen, longtime Burlington resident.

“Oh, it’s nice to see all this done. There’s a lot of nice work done. Most of it’s completed now, little things to tie up, but yes, it will help a lot of homeowners now,” said John Karhoff, longtime Burlington resident.

With Burlington completed, work continues on the main phases of the project in the city of Minot.