Advisory Base Flood Elevation maps now available in Bossier

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Courtesy Photo | Maps showing advisory high water marks on the Red River now available for public viewing.

Maps showing high water marks on the Red River, which establish an advisory Base Flood Elevation (BFE) from the northern to southern borders of Bossier Parish, will be on display for public viewing for the next 60 days.

Bossier Parish Engineer Butch Ford told members of the parish police jury last week that the maps will be available to the public at the jury office, located in the Benton Courthouse, and at all branches of the Bossier Parish library.

Library branches include the Central Library, 2206 Beckett St., Bossier City; Henry L. Aulds Memorial Library, 3950 Wayne Ave., Bossier City; Benton branch, 115 Courthouse Dr.; East 80 branch, 1050 Bellevue Rd., Haughton; Dorothy Elston Alford Memorial, 116 W. McKinley, Haughton; Rita Sanders Keoun Memorial, 208 E. Mary Lee Ave., Plain Dealing and Anna P. Tooke Memorial, Fairview Point Rd., Koran.

We’re starting a 60-day review of the elevations and the maps are available for public view and for the public to make comments,” Ford said.

Engineering department staff member Nguyen Kha said the high water marks were established after Polaris in Caddo Parish and Coyle Engineering in Bossier Parish determined elevations.

They shot elevations when we had the high water event,” Kha said. “These show the high water marks from north to south in Bossier and Caddo on the river side of the levees.”

Kha said flood waters in 2015 went above levels that had been established by the Corps of Engineers and FEMA flood maps years ago.

We had to establish new elevations where new homeowners can build…this is the best available information,” he said.

During last week’s meeting, Ford told police jury members the technical committee, that includes public bodies impacted by last year’s flooding, recommended new construction be required to exceed the BFE by 18 inches.

Kha said individuals who have been affected by the police jury imposed moratorium on new construction on the river side of Red River levees now have information they can use.

High water marks shown on the maps could be subject to change as changes, such as silting, occur in the Red River, he added.

Ford also told the jury that he will be working on revising the current flood ordinance to include the new map “…until such time as a new study is completed by the Corps and FEMA.”