WALNUT RIDGE, AR (KAIT) - Crews are working to improve drainage in Walnut Ridge by clearing a lot of trees and debris from main ditches that take water out of Lawrence County.
Walnut Ridge Mayor Charles Snapp said they are removing about 30 years of growth from ditches on West Main Street.
"What we're trying to do is open up the drainage at the point it goes into the main creeks," Snapp said. "If you can't get the water out of the ditches into the main drainage area, none of the ditches are going to work."
He said the trees were large enough to prevent water from flowing into those drains.
"When you have a forest that's grown up in the ditch, there's no place for the water to go except around and dodge the trees," Snapp said. "So it's going to open up a lot. I'm excited to see it. Plus, it cleans up the business area a lot."
The project costs $8,500. Snapp said the Village Creek Drainage District is paying $2,000 of that bill.
"Because they are responsible for up to 50 or 100 feet on either side of the creek," Snapp said. "And then the City of Walnut Ridge out of their street fund, the money we have set aside for drainage projects, is going to pay the other $6,500."
Snapp said they are also taking preventative measures with ditches in the rural parts of town, so they do not get as bad as the main ones have.
"The county road ditches have started growing up in the same manner and once I saw how much of a difference that's making up where they've already cleared on Village Creek, it became obvious these other ditches have the same issues."
The city also plans to clear out several ditches in the residential parts of town over the next several months.
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