Bentonville city leaders consider investing in flood prevention


Tuesday City leaders will vote on a service agreement with a team of engineers to look into drainage systems

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA) – Jonathan Robinson and his wife moved to their Bentonville home on SE 8th St. in May.

“Two days into buying my house the yard was half-flooded and I was a little worried,” Robinson said.

So he snapped a couple of photos and took his concern to City Hall.

“I’ve been going to City Hall every month for the last five-six months to let them know hey, this is a big deal and I want to make sure this is resolved,” Robinson said.

Robinson says he’s even taken matters into his own hands, cutting the bottom part of his fence and removing a tree to make sure the water flows out of their yard – but it still isn’t enough.

“When those floods come I can’t do anything and they’ll stick around for a while and it’s too muddy to do things,” Robinson said.

Transportation Director Dennis Birge is proposing the city hire a group of engineers to study how it can improve the drainage system on S.E. 8th St., Water Tower Rd. and Downtown Bentonville.

“We go out with our maintenance crews and we do what we can in the areas and we’re starting to realize in some areas that’s not enough,” Birge said. “It’s still becoming a flooding issue.”

Tuesday the city will vote whether to allocate over 28 grand towards the study on Water Tower Rd. and S.E. 8th St.

It’ll also decide on investing in the study in Downtown Bentonville – a project that could cost 800 grand because of older infrastructure.

“This was first done years ago and there were no underground drainage infrastructure in place there’s still none in most of the downtown area,” Birge said.

Robinson says he’s looking forward to seeing what the city decides.

“To me, I want to make sure I enjoy my backyard – I’m not out here to watch puddles, but I want to be able to grow a garden and throw a football,” Robinson said.

The meeting will start at 6 p.M. Tuesday.

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