Construction on McNiel Ave. Nearly Complete

As construction continues on McNiel to improve drainage, Newschannel 6 crews learned this area near Cunningham Elementary School has been on the City's Master Storm Drainage list for quite a while and is a high impact area for flooding.

Construction is one step closer to being complete, but until then, signs that say "detour" and "road closed to thru traffic" will continue to block streets.

Jeff Hill, Stormwater Engineer and Project Manager for the McNiel Drainage Project said that had the construction team not lost two months in May and June, the project would have been completed prior to the school year starting.

"I think we're going to remove 27 homes that have previously flooded in past events.  So this was on the top of our list," said Hill.

The area of McNiel is not recognized as being in the FEMA flood plain, but is considered a localized flooding area.

Hill said even with the flooding in Wichita Falls during the spring, there were no flooded structures within the McNiel area, so the drains were performing well.

"The original contract was for 18 months.  We're actually well ahead of schedule," said Hill.

Construction is expected to be complete by October.  Until then, parents dropping off their children at Cunningham Elementary next week will have access to the south parking lot on Pool Street.  Only buses and neighborhood residents will be allowed to travel south of the closure at Phillips and McNiel.

Taylor Barnes, Newschannel 6