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Pacific Right Bank Flood Protection Project

Project overview

The Pacific Right Bank Flood Protection project is located on the right bank of the White River in the City of Pacific. The project will extend from the BNSF Railway south to the King-Pierce County boundary line, as shown on the map below. The King County River and Floodplain Management Section is overseeing the design and construction of this project as service provider to the King County Flood Control District.

A photo showing an aerial view of Pacific City Park during or after a heavy flood. Water covers the majority of the open space in the park and extends toward the road. Some water appears to be flanking apartments along the road.
Pacific City Park during the 2009 flood

Severe flooding along the right bank of the White River in January 2009 affected the neighborhood communities of White River Estates, Third and Fourth Avenues, and Pacific City Park.

White River flooding has worsened over time because of sediment build up in the river channel. King County installed HESCO barriers as a short term-solution to increased flood risk in the area. HESCOs are large containers of sand, soil, or rocks/gravel that serve as a flood control. In the map above, they are noted by the green line. The Pacific Right Bank Flood Protection project will investigate ways to substantially reduce the potential of White River flooding in the City of Pacific.

Project site investigations are conducted through an environmental review process called SEPA. Four different project alternatives are being considered for further study in a draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), in addition to a no-action alternative.

All four alternatives will consider environmental impacts and opportunities to restore habitats for the endangered Chinook salmon, create other wildlife habitats, and support potential park and river recreational uses.

As part of the Pacific Right Bank Flood Protection Project, King County has been investigating a former dumpsite under Pacific City Park for cleanup under the guidance of the Washington State Department of Ecology’s (Ecology) Voluntary Cleanup Program. King County is conducting additional soil, groundwater, and vapor sampling as part of the multi-step dumpsite investigation.

Project goals

  • To substantially reduce the potential for White River flooding in the City of Pacific.
  • To improve environmental conditions along this portion of the White River.

Project schedule

Installed flood risk reduction measures (HESCO barriers)
October 2009
Started property acquisition
December 2009
Installed additional HESCO barriers (extension and height)
November 2013
Started feasibility studies
October 2014
Public scoping process completed
April 2018
Conduct environmental review (SEPA) process
2017 to 2023
Select preferred alternative for design
Project design
2022 to 2025
Target for construction
2026 to 2029