Plan calls for dismantling giant sandbag wall along Green River

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KENT, Wash. —

A new plan calls for tearing down a 26-mile wall of sandbags set up to stop the Green River from flooding.

 

The wall of two-ton sandbags covered by black tarp was supposed to protect 1 million people from a catastrophic flood, but public officials say the wall is no longer needed now that repairs to the Howard Hanson Dam have been done.

 

Neighbors near the wall have voiced their complaints about the eyesore loud and clear, said KIRO 7 Eyewitness News reporter Gary Horcher.

 

"Leaving them here for the last three years has just been a waste of a view and a waste of money," said Brad Barshis, who lives near the wall.

 

Barshis said removal of the wall -- expected to cost $6 million -- should have been done long ago.

 

"Taking this out is going to be nice," he said. "It'll give us a path back that the community does use regularly."

 

Neighbors noticed the walls deteriorating, sagging -- even collapsing in places.  When the giant sacks of sands will likely burst open when they're moved, Horcher said.

 

King County's Flood Control district will pay $4.5 million to get rid of the wall. Auburn, Tukwila and Kent will pay for the rest.