Projects along the Boise River remain on schedule despite early water release

Posted at 4:43 PM, Mar 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-07 18:54:25-05

BOISE — The Bureau of Reclamation has begun their flood risk management plan by releasing water out of the reservoirs, causing the Boise River to rise, and now there is water in some of the irrigation canals.

"People really need to be cautious of that," said Chris Runyan of the Bureau of Reclamation. "Just be cognizant that if the river was at a certain level one day it my be different the next day."

That's because the task of trying to mitigate flood risks while preserving as much water as possible in the reservoirs has started after an epic February snowfall.

We checked in with the Boise Parks & Rec department who said they have finished almost all 19 of their bank restoration projects. They removed the portadam at the entrance to phase two of the whitewater park and there were surfers out enjoying phase one of the whitewater park.

Both Boise Parks & Rec, as well as Flood District Ten, were able to keep their projects on-track despite the weather of February that forced crews to work in miserable weather.

"We had a hard time with the weather that was working against us," said Mike Dimmick the district manager of Flood District Ten. "It was sloppy and muddy, but we are ahead of the flood release."

Flood District Ten worked on preventing the Boise River from creating a new channel in Eagle. The $140,000 project was funded by the Idaho Water Resources Board after they received funding through the legislature last year.

"The concern with this channel is the river would make this a permanent channel. It would take out the Greenbelt pathway and threaten homes on Eagle Island," said Dimmick.

As far as flooding, it is too early to tell what will happen later this Spring because we have the whole month of March to add to the snowpack. Then the biggest factor after that will be the temperature and how fast it melts the snowpack.