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Key Flood Control Committee Recommends $2 Million in Funding for Critical Upgrades to Black River Pump Station

Summary

The King County Flood Control District (FCD) Executive Committee, chaired by Councilmember Reagan Dunn, on Thursday recommended $2 million in funding to support critical upgrades the Black River Pump Station. This funding is scheduled to go before the full FCD Board of Supervisors on October 30, 2019, when they will take up the full 2020 budget.

Story

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From left facing to right, Renton City Councilmember Armondo Pavone, King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn, Renton Public Works Administrator Gregg Zimmerman, and Renton Public Works staff member Joe Farah listen to a briefing on work at the Black River Pump Station during a recent tour.

The King County Flood Control District (FCD) Executive Committee, chaired by Councilmember Reagan Dunn, on Thursday recommended $2 million in funding to support critical upgrades the Black River Pump Station. This funding is scheduled to go before the full FCD Board of Supervisors on October 30, 2019, when they will take up the full 2020 budget.

The Black River Pump Station is a crucial piece of infrastructure that protects highly developed and largely commercial portions of Renton, Kent, and Tukwila. The station reduces the risk of flooding for 2,800 acres and $4.4 billion worth of property, including 370 structures in Renton. The station pumps all drainage from the 24.8 square-mile Springbrook Creek basin into the old Black River channel, which flows into the Duwamish River near Fort Dent Park.

“Almost one half of the Springbrook Drainage Basin lies within Renton,” said Renton City Councilmember Armondo Pavone. “This makes the Black River Pump Station upgrade essential for the protection of our community and commerce.”  

This $2 million in funding will provide new engines for three high-use pumps that power the Black River Pump Station. These pumps must function reliably and continuously to protect surrounding areas from flooding caused by high tides and Green River overflow.

“It is absolutely critical for the welfare of Renton, Tukwila, and Kent communities that the Black River Pump Station is in prime condition,” Dunn said. “This funding ensures that these communities are insulated from flooding risk.”

Work has been underway since January to make several necessary improvements to the station. Other projects include assessing seismic risk to the structure, evaluating and upgrading the fish passage systems, and creating a capital project strategy for existing and future projects. Those improvements are set to happen over the next eight years.

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