Marysville News

Creek flooding necessitates new ballfield fences

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More than 55 inches of snow dumped on central Ohio this winter has taken an unexpected toll in Marysville.

All that snow led to several bouts of flooding in low-lying areas around the city.

The most notable damage was at the City Fields at Mill Creek Park, where Mill Creek spilled over its banks and covered soccer and baseball fields.

Residents are used to seeing flooding there, but this time, the flood waters ripped much of the fencing away from the ballfields and also left scattered debris.

An estimated 5 feet of standing water did a fair amount of damage, said Mike Andrako, the city's director of public service. The repair work was completed March 31.

"The fence for the backstop and first-base line of field D and first-base line of field C needed to be replaced due to the damage caused by the flooding," he said.

The city spent $9,650 to repair the fences, which Andrako said are at least 14 years old.

"This is the first time they have been replaced," he said. "We have not had any damage since they were installed that has resulted in the need to replace fences."

Since October, the region's yearly snowfall totals 55.5 inches, according to the National Weather Service in Wilmington, enough to make it the second-snowiest winter on record. Those totals are for Columbus, since the NWS does not consistently track Union County's numbers, so the local total could be higher.

"The park is in the floodplain and so it will flood from time to time," Andrako said. "The major flooding experienced during the event this winter was rare."

Trying to prevent such damage in the future may be more hassle than it's worth, according to Andrako.

"Heavier-gauge metal and posts could be used, but we would still probably experience damage due to the forces of the water and the debris that can be floating in the creek," he said. "We decided to replace the fence with like material and are discussing the idea of moving the fields in the future to a different location."

Swarzkopf Park, which is adjacent to Mill Creek Park, also experienced some damage. The park at Mill Valley South had some debris from the flooding but no damage to equipment.

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