Pump Station Improvements Protect Local Industries and Residents’ Homes

Posted on Tuesday, April 11th, 2023 by
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Affinis began working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Kansas City District on the CID and Armourdale Pump Station Modifications project in 2019. They had plans to raise the levees, and the existing pump station structures needed to be analyzed to determine if they could handle the additional load.

To kick things off, our team studied the existing conditions at both sites by starting with an as-built survey. They compared their observations and notes with the as-built drawings to better understand the existing conditions and original design criteria. Then, they performed a structural analysis of the pump stations to see what needed to be strengthened.

At the same time, they evaluated pump capacity. Some stations were 100-years old and couldn’t handle the increase in flows that had occurred over the years. Based on the results, it was clear that nine pump stations needed to be strengthened structurally and six needed to be upgraded to handle a higher stormwater pumping capacity. One pump station required demolition, as it was now obsolete.

Following the survey, our team began design. During this process, they faced a few challenges. The first was an expedited schedule. Extensive collaboration kept the project on track. Weekly meetings were one piece of the puzzle. Another was the project team. USACE had a structural engineer embedded into the group. They kept things moving along by providing instant guidance and collaboration. In addition, USACE also kept the same project managers throughout the project. Having people who were dedicated to the project from the first day was invaluable to the project meeting schedule.

Another challenge was working with the existing structures. Often, our engineers had to retrofit solutions. Making modifications and thinking creatively allowed them to troubleshoot issues as they arose.

These improvements were made using a cost-sharing model. The Kansas City Levee Raise project is completely funded by the government. This effort covers payment for strengthening and maintaining the existing pumps’ capacity. However, betterments, like increasing flow, were not within the scope. The Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas agreed to pay for the improvements that would increase pump capacity as a betterment to the project. By working together, they were able to deliver a more effective solution for the pump station sponsor and the surrounding area.

Currently, the CID site is complete, while the pump stations at Armourdale are under construction. Those are expected to be completed next year. Once finished, these improvements will provide additional protection to everything below the levee and will help mitigate the risk of flooding for nearby industries and homes.

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