Every winter on Oregon’s north coast, the Necanicum River spills out over its banks during heavy rains and swallows the road just south of Seaside. This happens at least once -– and up to seven times — a year.
But not this year.
Last summer, highway officials teamed up with a local landowner to use a nearby wetland as a natural sponge for floodwater. By removing a mile-long wall of dirt, they freed the river to spread out into its natural flood plain. Since then, even when the Necanicum has over-topped its banks, it hasn’t sent its waters to flood the highway.
It’s a big change from how things used to be. Continue reading…