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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Sounds bizarre to even think, but that's what they're calling the flood from the past two days. The amount of water going down the river is something thought impossible only a week ago. If the water from the normally small Cedar River were in the Mississippi, it would have put the river 2 feet above it's own flood stage.

Flood stage in Cedar Rapids is 12 feet. The Cedar River on Friday was running well over 31 feet. 1,200 city blocks went under water, including the entire downtown area. Most of these areas weren't in a regular flood plain, and the 500 year flood plain that everyone was dreading was dwarfed by the 150,000 cubic feet of water per second.


All local news affiliates were on 24 hour coverage, and the newscaster did a really good job holding together while being on the air for up to 15 hours straight. I was watching the local coverage from Chicago, and it was heartbreaking. People were in a total state of panic and shock. This wasn't "the big one" that anyone was waiting for, it was something that was honestly not even thought possible. No one prepared, because the city had been protected for flooding, and escaped the major floods from the past (1993). It was thought to be a fairly flood-proof city. People just didn't comprehend that 1,200 blocks were slowly and surely going under throughout the day/night on Thursday. It was so sad to watch the city dying live on TV thursday night.

People were orderly though, and tens of thousands in non flooded areas poured out of their homes to help in any way they could. My parents live in Iowa City, and said the sheer amount of support was unbelievable. No one waited for the government to step in, they grabbed shovels and dump trucks, and went to work immediately. My parents spent hours in a line of hundreds of people moving 500,000 books out of the basement of the main library by hand. There was no looting, no tresspassing, and no real crimes in Iowa City or Cedar Rapids over these few days. At least that's something that can make the residents proud.

So far 40,000 are forced out of their homes, and there have been 17 deaths. The Governor has been touring the area, and stated that Bush "said he will be visiting the area at some point in the future". The state's finances are in a good state though, and the governor said they will be tapping the huge "rainy day fund", which currently has more money than ever, to help all communities clean up and rebuild.
































































 

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Odd that the one thing in Cedar Rapids that is most reviled by a least a few people is the only thing in the city that appears to still be completely open and functioning as it was designed to - that being I-380.

It may end up being the city's saving grace.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah, I-380 has been bumper to bumper for days now. They blocked traffic in the left lane to just be used by emergency vehicles (which amazingly, everyone obeyed), and traffic was shoved to the right 2-3 lanes for regular vehicles. It was the only way to travel across down for days.











 

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My heart goes out to these people. The clean-up is extremely difficult and is just filth like you wouldn't believe. But, it can be done. Over 250,000 homes went under in New Orleans with Katrina and well, you see how beautiful our story is turning out. We're rebuilding like you wouldn't believe and 93% of the Metro area has returned home with the number increasing impressively each passing month. Cedar Rapids can do it and they will.
 

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That is a serious flood. Like a mini-Katrina of the Midwest. I am sure Cedar Rapids will get thru this just fine; looks like it from the pictures. So who was the :weirdo: that came up with the name: "3,000 Year Flood"?
Being an animal lover, I love seeing the cat pics. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
That is a serious flood. Like a mini-Katrina of the Midwest. I am sure Cedar Rapids will get thru this just fine; looks like it from the pictures. So who was the :weirdo: that came up with the name: "3,000 Year Flood"?
Being an animal lover, I love seeing the cat pics. :)
It's all about statisics. You normally hear about 100 and 500 year floods. They basically try and estimate that given water flows and volumes flowing down a river, it would flood a certain amount of land during events ocurring once every 100 or 500 years. That just means that every single year, you have a 1% or .2% chance of the river containing enough water to flood your flood plain.

This one they're estimating is an event that would have a roughly .003% chance of happening during any given year. This is why it's so amazing, no one even really thought it was possible, let alone it would happen. The water in the Cedar River doesn't normally flood, and the last time it flooded bad was back in 1929. This time the river rose up over the city 12 feet higher than it did in 1929, and was around 20 feet above flood stage, which is 12 feet. They evacuated the 500 year flood plain, and thought it was going to be devestating, then watched in horror as the amount of water completely dwarfed the "500 year flood". They didn't have a chance...

Walk down to your local river, imagine it topping out at flood stage at the very top of its banks......and then add another 20 feet of water.
 

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The difficult aspect of this flood is that the central core of the city has flooded, along with ALOT of homes. Only about 1/8 of Downtown New Orleans flooded with Katrina. Even though 80% of New Orleans flooded our "inner core," was spared and recovery spread out from the center of the city. The recovery will be different and possibly more sporadic in Cedar Rapids. The cure, if you will, is they need to get their Downtown functioning as quickly as possible. From the looks of these pics, it will probably take 18 months to 2 years for the Downtown area to properly recover, but, as stated, you definitely want your inner core back and moving really good. Cedar Rapids will recover, but, the dynamics of the recovery will be different than in New Orleans, and then, of course, the flood, as a whole is about 1/50 the size of the Katrina event, but, it's still very serious. They are going to need support.
 

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Hopefully you will recover quickly from this devastation. The first month or so will be the worst as you clean up the mess, but it will get better from there. Good luck to everyone up there in Midwest. I grew up in IL, and remember how bad it was back in 93. This looks worse.
 

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I wish you guys all the best in your recovery efforts. Not to sound like the voice of doom, but this water has to go somewhere right? Cities downstream are already (hopefully) bracing for the coming floodwaters. Let's hope the Mississippi Valley doesn't get much more rain . . . and the measures put in place from the last flood in 1993 are enough to keep back the floodwaters.
 

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Wow, shocking photos! I hope the best for them. It really looks like New Orleans, so sad.
 

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I have lived in Iowa for all 21 years of my life, and three days after I move the flood of all floods takes place.

Crazy.
 

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Wow from 1998-2000 I worked in downtown Cedar Rapids, in fact the 5th picture shows the parking lot where all of us at MCI (worldcom) parked to go to work. And never really thought about the possibility of Cedar Rapids flooding... wow.
 

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wow. that's sad. Its incredible how bad it got.

It looks like Downtown Des Moines is about to go under too?

 

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a bit late, but this is my hometown (and still live here)
I'll try and take pictures of the after math, even though it's 3 weeks after, we're still in the shit
 
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