Havana Requests Assistance with Flooded Wetland

Illinois State Geological Survey wetlands geologist James Miner attended a meeting at IDOT District 6 headquarters to discuss a request by the City of Havana for assistance and right-of-way permitting to drain a large wetland complex east of Havana. The mostly farmed wetland greatly expands during periods of high precipitation, such as the past 18 months, and then diminishes for several years at a time. The wetland is currently flooding county roads and large areas of farmland. The wetland is an Illinois Natural Areas Inventory site that is habitat for the federally endangered chorus frog. The wetland was the site of extensive study by the Illinois State Water Survey and the Office of Water Resources, Illinois Department of Natural Resources during the 1990s, and a groundwater model was made of the site. The model suggests that much more drainage capacity is needed than is currently being planned. The City of Havana received and acknowledged the information, which includes the recommendations that new modeling is needed to correctly design the system. Expectations are that permits from several state and federal agencies may be needed, and the city plans to proceed when funding is found.