The city of Nashville, still recovering from a devastating flood in 2010 that caused more than $2 billion in damages to Davidson County, Tenn., is planning to build a $100-million flood protection system over the next three years.
City officials announced the plan on Feb. 25. The centerpiece of the program, originally unveiled in 2013, is a 2,100-ft floodwall intended to help protect the city from major floods.
"Like other river cities, Nashville can be protected by a floodwall system," said Metro Services director Scott Potter at the press conference. "The cost of a protection system is minimal compared to the much larger expense of recovery."
Officials said that the flooding not only caused $2 billion in damage, it resulted in $3.6 billion in lost revenue for the city.
The project will include four major components: the floodwall—900 ft of which are permanent, and a 1,200-ft section that can be removed; construction of gate closure structures to close off a sewer and storm tunnel to keep the Cumberland River from backing up into the sewer system and flooding downtown; construction of a flow control structure to close off another tunnel; and construction of a stormwater pumping station to divert water held back by the floodwall and the closed tunnels into the Cumberland River to prevent flooding in downtown Nashville.
Davidson County has already spent an additional $139 million for flood recovery and mitigation across the county. Most of those funds have been used outside of the downtown area to improve the MetroCenter levee; buy and demolish 225 at-risk properties; and develop tools to better respond to flooding.
The flood protection system will be built in conjunction with the construction of Riverfront Park, an 11-acre civic park on the site of a former trash incineration plant.