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Natomas Levee Improvement Project - November 2021


Natomas Levee Project—U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 

Goal:  Complete levee improvements started by SAFCA/State to provide Natomas Basin at least 200-year flood protection

Project Status:  Project is fully authorized by Congress (2014 Water Resources and Reform Development Act).  Appropriations are made on an annual basis

Cost Sharing Partners:  SAFCA (local) and Central Valley Flood Protection Board (State)

Operation and Maintenance Responsibility:  Reclamation District No. 1000

Construction Status:  See Construction Phasing Map

November 2021 Status:

Reach A

  i.      The Contract was awarded on September 23 to Ahtna-Great Lakes (joint venture) for the base contract. Construction is still scheduled to commence in 2022 for three years.

  ii.     Work at Plants 1A and 1B are options for Reach A contract to be awarded following resolution of an issue the Corps has with the SAFCA/RD 1000 agreement for work at Plant 1. The District is working with SAFCA and Corps Counsel to resolve the issue.

  iii.   The Corps anticipates tree removal work starting in November.  SAFCA/State continue coordinating with the Corps on SMUD, and PGE relocations. The Corps will conduct public outreach this fall related to the tree removal work.

Reach B

  i.      Construction continued on Reach B including relocation of the Riverside Canal, replacement of other Natomas Water Company facilities and levee construction south of Powerline Road. Borrow for Reach B will come from work on the Lower American River sites and Pocket Area levee work to be delivered in May 2022. 

  ii.     Primary issue on Reach B was the overtopping of the sheetpile wall on Plant 3 from high river levels caused by the record precipitation event on October 24.  This will delay the completion of the outfall structure and discharge pipe placement previously scheduled to be completed in December.  Staff is concerned about the completion in a timely manner and has elevated the concern with SAFCA and the Corps.  Garden Highway will remain closed between San Juan Rd and Powerline Rd until the discharge pipe repairs are complete. There is no time frame as of now.

  iii.   Construction at the I-5 window crossing the Sacramento River south of Bayou Road consists of widening the levee by extending the waterside slope into a paved parking lot area and construction of a seepage berm on the landside of the project footprint. The current intersection and ramp for North Bayou Way would be rebuilt to meet the new grade of the levee. The contractor is in the process of winterizing the site in coordination with District field staff. The Corps is evaluating the current contract as it relates to contractor selection for project completion next year.

Reach C

  i.      The Reach C project is complete, and the District is providing the operation and maintenance.

Reach D

  i.      The reconstruction of Pumping Plant 4, discharge pipes and outfall structure has entered month 6. The plant will not be operational this flood season as the contractor waits for electrical equipment and resolves power issues with PG&E.

  ii.     The Corps is working on the package to turn the previously completed levee improvements in Reach D over to the non-federal sponsors (and RD 1000) though the District has effectively taken over the O&M of the levee.

Reach E

  i.      The State, SAFCA and RD 1000 submitted comments on the 95% plans and continue to work with the design team to resolve our comments. The Corps will schedule a “plans in hand meeting” for early 2022 when the 100% plans are expected to be complete February 1. Currently, the proposed borrow site is the Kaufman property adjacent to the project. Critical issue continues to be securing right of way and coordination with PG&E to move their utility lines outside the proposed construction. The current scheduled contract award date is July 2022 (construction 2023 and 2024).

  ii.     SAFCA and State DWR have initiated right of way acquisition based on the ROW Take letter from the Corps issued in July. Appraisals have been completed and offers for the acquisition will be made in October/November.

Reach F

  i.      The Corps continues to work on the 65% design based on the revised

  ii.     Design Water Surface elevation and geotechnical information. The non-federal sponsors will review the 65% plans in late 2021 with a site visit to be scheduled in early 2022.

  iii.   State and SAFCA continue working with the Corps on key issues affecting design; particularly the proposed takes on properties with existing structures, the work near Pumping Plant No. 6 and a borrow source. Currently there is no identified borrow site for the work in Reach F and G which could impact the schedule. The Corps estimates it may take up to two years to get approval for a newly identified borrow site including Geotech, cultural and environmental clearance. Contract Award still scheduled for 2022 and construction in 2023 and 2024 if a borrow site can be identified.

Reach G

  i.      See notes above for Reach F as Reaches F and G are combined into a single design and construction contract.

Reach H

  i.      Construction activities continue to complete construction on E. Levee Road, landside patrol road, retaining walls and the seepage berm north of I-80. SAFCA continues acquisition of rights needed to complete patrol road and fence relocations. This project will likely continue into 2023 as these contract modifications are negotiated and rights of way acquired. East Levee Road is expected to re-opened the end of November.

Reach I

  i.      Construction of the cutoff wall has been completed and project finalization and turnover to SAFCA and the District is in progress.

  ii.     Design for the Reach I Contract 2 to construct a patrol / maintenance road and perform levee slope flattening has been completed. The Real Estate is scheduled to be certified in November pending negotiations. Contract for tree removal has been awarded with work done between November and February of 2021 and 2022. The levee construction is delayed to 2023.

Other Projects

  i.      Plant 5 replacement—Design for Plant 5 replacement has been delayed to January 2022 due to lack of funding. Corps is coordinating with SAFCA on the designer selection

  ii.     Highway 99 – The design contract for the closure of the Highway 99 crossing gap at the Natomas Cross Canal has been awarded to HDR Engineers. The 35% plans will be completed in November for review by the design team. The proposed fix is a slurry wall either across the freeway lanes from the top of the levee or along the waterside under the bridge with a clay cap placed on the waterside slope. The Corps and State will coordinate with Caltrans on the preferred alternative.

For additional updates on the Natomas Levee Project go here and sign up for the Army Corps mailing list.