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Diversion channel, levees among preliminary plans studied to resolve Fargo-Moorhead flooding problems

FARGO - A $909 million Red River diversion channel and $625 million in levees are two plans given preliminary study by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to provide Fargo and Moorhead with permanent flood protection, a corps report says.

The plans and other aspects of the corps' metropolitan feasibility study will be presented tonight for public input at Centennial Hall in Fargo's Civic Memorial Auditorium. The meeting starts with an open house at 5:30, and a formal presentation at 7. A question and answer session follows.

A corps' team suggests a diversion channel running through Minnesota from the confluence of the Wild Rice and the Red River south of Fargo, north to a point northwest of Kragnes, "could substantially reduce the frequency of high flood stages through Fargo and Moorhead," the report said.

In addition, a levee plan along the Red River in the metro area, which would include as aspects of the proposed Southside Flood Control Project, could be certified to provide 100-year-level flood protection, the corps said in a report.

The corps said neither plan was fully studied and that only preliminary information was available on the effectiveness of the two alternatives.

A second meeting is planned Wednesday at Hanson Theater at Minnesota State University Moorhead.