Omaha Public Radio News
12:46 pm
Mon June 28, 2010

Bellevue's Haworth Park closed indefinitely due to flooding

Omaha, NE – Bellevue's Haworth Park remains underwater, and city officials are unsure when it will reopen.

The park sits along the west bank of the Missouri River. Its camp sites and picnic shelters are flooded. City Administrator Gary Troutman says significant cleanup and repair are needed before the park can reopen.

"There's pedestals with electric hook-ups for our campground. They have been underwater for some time, and that will probably require brand new electrical wiring in those boxes," Troutman says. "Our shower houses for the campers have electrical heat in them, and that's not only going to require electrical work but it's also going to require someone to come in and sanitize those buildings as well as our picnic shelters."

Troutman estimates the city has lost at least $16,000 in revenue so far because camp sites are closed. The camp ground is normally full in June due to the College World Series.

Bellevue officials are also monitoring conditions in Kramer Park, where a two-mile long walking trail is flooded.

It took six months to reopen Haworth Park after the floods of 1993.

Meanwhile, the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency says as many as 51 counties could be declared disaster areas.

Governor Dave Heineman wants a disaster declaration following tornadoes, flooding, and high winds throughout Nebraska. NEMA executive director Al Berndt says damage assessments are complete in 66 counties, and 48 should qualify for disaster assistance.

Many Nebraska roads remain closed or impassable due to flooding.