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Author Topic: kNOW Your Tulsa April Meeting: Water in the River  (Read 6687 times)
chimchim
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« on: March 24, 2015, 07:34:26 pm »

TulsaNow’s monthly public forum will include a presentation by the Chairman of the Arkansas River Task Force and City Council District 9 representative G.T. Bynum. He’ll discuss work of the task force so far  including discussions about dams, locations, potential cost and funding timeline.

A panel discussion will follow including Bynum, Tulsa author Ann Patton, whose book “The Tulsa River” is currently on sale in local area book stores, and retired City of Tulsa Public Works Director Charles Hardt, who served as the city’s chief hydrologist for two decades.

Panelists will discuss the history of the river, use of the river and challenges in developing Tulsa’s greatest natural asset.

The public is invited to attend.
The meeting is Wednesday, April 1st  at 5:30 at  Harwelden Mansion, 2210 South Main.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2015, 07:36:04 pm by chimchim » Logged
cannon_fodder
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« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2015, 05:43:58 pm »

*bump*
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heironymouspasparagus
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« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2015, 08:29:40 pm »

TulsaNow’s monthly public forum will include a presentation by the Chairman of the Arkansas River Task Force and City Council District 9 representative G.T. Bynum. He’ll discuss work of the task force so far  including discussions about dams, locations, potential cost and funding timeline.

A panel discussion will follow including Bynum, Tulsa author Ann Patton, whose book “The Tulsa River” is currently on sale in local area book stores, and retired City of Tulsa Public Works Director Charles Hardt, who served as the city’s chief hydrologist for two decades.

Panelists will discuss the history of the river, use of the river and challenges in developing Tulsa’s greatest natural asset.

The public is invited to attend.
The meeting is Wednesday, April 1st  at 5:30 at  Harwelden Mansion, 2210 South Main.


Ouch!!  "Tulsa's greatest natural asset..." 



I guess everyone can't have the Grand Canyon or the Rocky Mountains...  But we are still better and nicer ambience' than OKC!!

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Conan71
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« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2015, 10:21:36 pm »

Wish we could be there.  We have been doing some recon on the very upper reaches of the Arkansas today.
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« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2015, 08:59:59 am »

Wish we could be there.  We have been doing some recon on the very upper reaches of the Arkansas today.


Colorado should be gorgeous this time of year!!

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“When you wage war on the public schools, you're attacking the mortar that holds the community together. You're not a conservative, you're a vandal.”    - Garrison Keillor

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« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2015, 10:24:01 am »


Colorado should be gorgeous this time of year!!



Aspens are just starting to bud, not quite ready for the leaves to pop.  Day temps are really nice!
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« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2015, 04:42:42 pm »

Great meeting. Very well attended, people standing to see the speakers.

Bynum is a very good speaker and comes across very earnest. I don't think he has an agenda, he simply thinks water in the river is in the best interest of Tulsa. The other speakers similarly were very well spoken and earnest, believing that the river is best left alone, and that we will never properly maintain anything we build.

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AquaMan
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« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2015, 06:12:24 pm »

They are both right.
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sgrizzle
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« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2015, 06:22:37 pm »

I was interested in the argument that said we can't do anything to the river because the levees are bad.
1. GT pointed out there is a Levee authority tasked with maintaining those levees and they have tons of money.
2. GT also stated the new plan offers more control over water levels than the current one.

Some other interesting notes
1. Our river is largely like it is now due to the keystone dam, poor zink dam design and once daily water releases
2. The Sand Springs dam is most important as it is being used to change the nightly releases into a more continuous water flow downstream.
3. While the dam would create lakes the only extend roughly a couple of miles upstream, the rest of the river would look more like it's pre-keystone self, with a more steady flow of water.
4. The plan is to include a maintenance endowment to fund the maintenance.
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Conan71
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« Reply #9 on: April 02, 2015, 09:26:19 pm »

Unfortunately, we had to miss this one since we have been exploring the headwaters of many middle U.S. rivers this week.  I would have loved to finally meet RM’s mother especially.

Can someone please remind me why the LWD in Sand Springs was removed in the first place?
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AquaMan
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« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2015, 09:02:00 am »

I was interested in the argument that said we can't do anything to the river because the levees are bad.
1. GT pointed out there is a Levee authority tasked with maintaining those levees and they have tons of money.
2. GT also stated the new plan offers more control over water levels than the current one.

Some other interesting notes
1. Our river is largely like it is now due to the keystone dam, poor zink dam design and once daily water releases
2. The Sand Springs dam is most important as it is being used to change the nightly releases into a more continuous water flow downstream.
3. While the dam would create lakes the only extend roughly a couple of miles upstream, the rest of the river would look more like it's pre-keystone self, with a more steady flow of water.
4. The plan is to include a maintenance endowment to fund the maintenance.

Some other notes:
1.The levee district may have tons of money. Its a county thing so who knows. However, those levees are merely piled up sand weakened by trees, erosion and water. They are 1940's design. The trees grow well in the sandy loam then fall into the river taking big chunks of levee with them. Real use of the river means taking out trees and reinforcing the levees. Costly and not very attractive when finished.

2. Who will control the water flow? The Corps' releases are not influenced by recreational needs downstream. A new authority would make those decisions for all the cities adjacent to the river. We need more bureaucracy and the more layered, the more it works well. (sarcasm)

3. Not sure what you mean by "the way it is now". I played on that river and watched it flood as a youth in the fifties and early sixties. It looked and acted very much the same as it does now except more extreme. It was often dry, and often flooded. It doesn't flood so much anymore. Zink dam doesn't really play into it much anymore.

4. Its not accurate to say there are once daily or nightly releases. That is a common cycle but the Corps only releases in response to a couple things. Management of the water flow in the chain of dams on the river and power generation by Southwest Power Administration. Its a self funded flood control dam. And though it appears to be nightly, the water released is for power generated during the high demand periods of the daytime and early evening (to run air conditioners, computers, tv's etc.) It takes 4-6 hours to arrive in Tulsa, another couple of hours to Broken Arrow, Bixby. That cycle is a common summertime schedule. The rest of the year is sketchy and dependent on weather. Check the historical releases online to confirm. I bet Conan has that link.

5. The Sand Springs dam is the most important (which makes you wonder why the Jenks and Zink dam are rumored to be attacked first). My reading of past proposals noted that dam would impound up to 4 miles upstream. 4 miles of the most beautiful shoreline, most heavily wildlife populated area of the river. When I invited you kids to come float it with me you missed a great opportunity. It changes seasonally, daily and hourly. Never the same trip twice but always impressive views, historically notable and downright otherworldly. To change it into a flush bowl for downstream ponds is like putting an Outlet Mall on Turkey mountain. Yeah, you can do it but.......

6. My feeling is, its too late to beg not to do this thing. It is an abomination to flood the upper reach in order to make post card ponds for the casino. But my impression is that isn't the discussion now.  Its like the old joke about the prostitute rejecting a low offer. "What do you think I am a common whore?", "Lady we've already established what you are......we're haggling price".

7. With number 6 in mind consider this. There is no connectivity between these dams. That means no synergy. No cruises, no city to city water taxis, no canoeing downstream without portaging, no group marketing.  Each impound lives or dies on its support and usage by the adjacent city.
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AquaMan
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« Reply #11 on: April 03, 2015, 09:09:41 am »

Unfortunately, we had to miss this one since we have been exploring the headwaters of many middle U.S. rivers this week.  I would have loved to finally meet RM’s mother especially.

Can someone please remind me why the LWD in Sand Springs was removed in the first place?

Multiple deaths associated with that dam (I seem to remember around 2 dozen). The river starts to narrow and curve at that point. The design of the dam did not adequately prepare for the massive stresses that routine 40k to 250k releases carrying snags (trees that fell into the river) would exact on a dam built on a sandy river bed.  It had lots of undertow around the dam and would suck trees under it and pop them out the other side. It was a great place for fishermen and young kids to walk out on and get in trouble.

Add to that the overhype as to what an economic boon it would be for the city (sound familiar?) and what a failure it was in attracting any development and you start to understand. Liabilities far outweighed benefits.

It blowed up real nice......
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Conan71
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« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2015, 06:15:29 pm »

Multiple deaths associated with that dam (I seem to remember around 2 dozen). The river starts to narrow and curve at that point. The design of the dam did not adequately prepare for the massive stresses that routine 40k to 250k releases carrying snags (trees that fell into the river) would exact on a dam built on a sandy river bed.  It had lots of undertow around the dam and would suck trees under it and pop them out the other side. It was a great place for fishermen and young kids to walk out on and get in trouble.

Add to that the overhype as to what an economic boon it would be for the city (sound familiar?) and what a failure it was in attracting any development and you start to understand. Liabilities far outweighed benefits.

It blowed up real nice......

I thought it had more to do with safety than anything, thanks for the refresher!
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« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2015, 12:49:32 pm »

I was interested in the argument that said we can't do anything to the river because the levees are bad.
1. GT pointed out there is a Levee authority tasked with maintaining those levees and they have tons of money.
2. GT also stated the new plan offers more control over water levels than the current one.

I thought he said the district has been saving funds, but has on the order of $1.2 million in reserves. While significant money for me, that's nothing when redoing levees. There are 20 miles of levees that need upwards of $30,000,000 in improvements. So the people/business that live in that area would have to pony up (they currently pay something like 12 a year). The tax levee (get it?) could be increased by a vote of the County Commissioners.

Not sure how much the increase would actually be., but I can see the objection of the owners in that area. For instance, Ark Wrecking stands to gain nothing by having more water on the other side of the levee...

Quote
Some other interesting notes
1. Our river is largely like it is now due to the keystone dam, poor zink dam design and once daily water releases
2. The Sand Springs dam is most important as it is being used to change the nightly releases into a more continuous water flow downstream.
3. While the dam would create lakes the only extend roughly a couple of miles upstream, the rest of the river would look more like it's pre-keystone self, with a more steady flow of water.
4. The plan is to include a maintenance endowment to fund the maintenance.

The plan itself seems very well reasoned. The drop down gates to get rid of silt and sand. The way to handle wildlife. The constant flow design.  All of that seems great.

What was not addressed at all is the cost to benefit.

I asked how much private land there is that can be developed along the river. The response was regarding total shoreline. I have previously done an analysis and the amount of land that is truly available to develop isn't very much. We would be spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to add water to the river for each acre of development we hope to obtain.

It would be a huge benefit to the Creek Nation, who kinda sorta maybe said they might think about paying something but aren't obligated to. They get water for their new casino, river walk, and other new developments.  I would whole heatedly support them building a dam along there to help make their properties look better. But given the very limited development potential for private enterprise in that area - it seems to be a crappy return on investment to me.

The Sand Springs reservoir area is likewise nearly devoid of development opportunity.

The section in Tulsa is well hemmed in by Riverparks. Yes, I know developers want to "work with the public" to develop portions of it, and I'm sure some compromises can be made, but overall this is a HUGE chunk of change to decide we will go ahead and build it and then decide how much park land we will give to developers.

For $300,000,000 or $400,000,000 couldn't we buy Keystone Dam, or otherwise bribe the Corp to shut down or alter the generator station so we could use the reservoir there to have a consistent flow in the river? I get that it wouldn't be as pretty as a series of slow flowing lakes, but wow.

I would like water in the river simply for looks. But at that price tag I just don't see the reward.
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sgrizzle
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« Reply #14 on: April 05, 2015, 01:12:38 pm »


The Sand Springs reservoir area is likewise nearly devoid of development opportunity.


Umm...
http://legacy.pitchengine.com/crossroadscommunicationsllc/sand-springs-riverwest-project-moves-forward
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