Haworth Park might need $3 million in flood repair

BELLEVUE, Neb. (WOWT) -- The City of Bellevue says Haworth Park could need millions of dollars worth of flood repairs.

Officials say the Missouri River is still out of its banks and they can't assess the damage or get FEMA involved until the river goes down at least 10 feet.

Usually by this time of year people are out camping with their RVs at Haworth and boating on the Missouri but the park has been closed since March.

Officials say Haworth Park is in a flood plain. It floods regularly, as it should, but the water is supposed to come in and go out quickly.

When it sits for weeks or months, like it has this year, it damages buildings, electrical systems and it washes away the river bank.

The city says the last time it flooded this bad was in 2011 and they put in $1.9 million to fix it. Today they estimate it could cost nearly $3 million.

We ran into Kaylee Ashley walking her dog along the river Thursday. She said she's seen Haworth Park flood several times in the past but this time it's lasted a lot longer.

“I think there needs to be measures put in for dams but I think it's natural weather, So it's going to happen one way or another.”

Bellevue’s Public Works Director, Jeff Roberts, looked out over the damage and told us, “This was all underwater, this parking lot and road.”

Roberts said the length of time the water has maintained its grip is the big problem.

“It's still out of its banks and you can see where the benches are. That’s where the trail was. The trail is gone.”

Cindi Todero Ohle said, “It's devastating but it happens every few years.”

Cindi and her daughter enjoy what the park brings to the city, an RV season, camping and boating. But we asked them if the money put into it to fixing the area is worth it and Cindi said, “Not really, because they don't even get finished and then it floods again and they have to start over again.”

The park has been repaired several times. Cindi’s daughter, Burgundy Ohle, said the $3 million needed for repair could be used for something else.

“It's one of my favorite places,” she said. “I think it's worth it to fix it but, I mean, I'm a teacher so I think it could be put into education.”

It will be up to the city council to decide what they want to do. Right now they’re just waiting for the water level to drop.