Lubbock's 100-Year Flood Still Lingers In City Parks
The effects of Lubbock's 100-year flood still linger in city parks. NewsChannel 11 is told clean up efforts began soon after the rains stopped, yet floodwaters still remain in some parks.
Nearly every day Irma Valles takes 3-year-old Mason and others at her daycare to the playground at Maxey Park. "This is one way to get them out and get some sunshine," Valles said.
However, Valles says that play date was cancelled when more than seven inches of rain flooded the Hub City. "The lake is so close, so I didn't want anything to happen to them so we kind of stopped," Valles said.
Community Services Director Randy Truesdell says crews started to clean up Maxey Park and others across the city once the floodwaters receded. "We had all of our parks employees and our county inmate crew focusing on park cleanup and we had a schedule that we would go through all our parks properties," Truesdell said.
However, more than three weeks after the heavy rains, the picnic area at Charles A. Guy Park remains mostly under water. "We can't control the elevation of the lake," Truesdell said.
Instead, it's the Lubbock Stormwater Management department's job. Engineer Mike Keenum says once the playa lake off 91st and Akron Avenue drops to a pre-flood level, then pumping can begin at Guy Park. Something Keenum expects to begin next week. "As the water draws down and evaporates it leaves silt you've got to come in and pressure wash and clean up that silt," Truesdell adds.
To help expedite those efforts and others the city has hired extra Lubbock County Inmate Work Crews. "I'm doing a final review of the contracts this morning (Friday) and we expect to have them working by the middle of next week," Emergency Management Director Kevin Overstreet said.
But despite cleanup efforts, Valles says more needs to be done. "I think it could be cleaner especially for this one, he always picking up things," Valles said.
Truesdell says once all the city's parks are safe, crews will go back for a more thorough cleaning. Truesdell expects that to begin in the next couple of weeks, if it doesn't rain.