HANNIBAL — With the recent completion of an underground storm-water repair on North Street, the Hannibal Board of Public Works is now focused on above-ground work in the same area.

“HBPW crews have been working in this area to clean up the above-ground area recently,” said Mathew Munzlinger of the HBPW. “The plan is to make the area safe to where the temporary fence can be removed.”

The temporary fencing was set in place over a year ago after the force of water flowing into the storm-water system during a torrential rain event in May 2019 caused the pavement to buckle on the east end of North Street.

Heartland Restoration, Inc., of Elsberry was hired to make temporary repairs to approximately 250 feet of the drainage system’s stone archway. However, various obstacles kept the company from undertaking the work as soon as it had been hoped.

“They originally tried to get in here in June, but the river level would not allow it,” said Munzlinger during a recent meeting of the HBPW Board. “They came in the last week of July and were able to get the fabric put into the walls. But then we got a rain and the flows coming down through there were too much for them to temporarily pump out (enough water) and get the concrete poured.”

According to Munzlinger, the concrete was finally poured on Aug. 18. Heartland Restoration returned to wrap up its work on the project on Aug. 31.

The next repair project that will be undertaken in that area will be the responsibility of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It will replace that portion of the drainage system from the toe of the levee to the east edge of the alley behind the Mark Twain Brewery. A levee toe is the edge of the levee where the base meets natural ground.

“At that point we will make the connection and go on further west,” Munzlinger said during the September meeting of the HBPW Board.

After the Army Corps of Engineers has completed its work the HBPW plans to undertake a permanent repair of the storm sewer. It will entail replacing the storm sewer’s existing stone archway with a box culvert from where the Corps’ repair ends near the flood levee all the way to Mark Twain Avenue.

The estimated cost of the permanent repair is $5.5 million, which was the least expensive of the permanent repairs that was proposed in 2019 to the HBPW. That repair option was selected by the HBPW Board in October 2019.

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