None of the four creeks in SLC are expected to reach flood stage

May 30, 2023, 6:51 PM | Updated: 7:14 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — As record-breaking snowfall piled up in the mountains, our communities prepared, concerned that there could be major flooding issues this spring. Salt Lake City did not want a repeat of 1983 when floodwaters flowed down State Street. Fortunately, according to Salt Lake City water managers, that now appears very unlikely.

City Creek is the one that infamously flooded 40 years ago.

Remembering the floods of 1983

This evening it’s running high and fast. But it’s not likely to cause any flooding in the days and weeks ahead.

“I feel like we’re looking really good on all four creeks they come through Salt Lake City,” Jesse Stewart, deputy director of Salt Lake City Public Utilities said.

Right now, it looks like Salt Lake City will escape any major flooding from this record-breaking snow year. None of the four creeks that drain into the city are forecasted to get anywhere near flood stage before the snow runs out.

“The weather has been really good to us,” Stewart said. “So we’ve been able to maintain these high 70s, low 80s. We’ve had some cooler nights. So the weather has really regulated the flows quite well for us.”

The flows in Emigration Creek and Red Butte Creek are both declining. City Creek peaked several days ago but is expected to remain well below flood stage.

For a couple of months, the city restricted releases from Little Dell and Mountain Dell reservoirs to manage the flow in Parleys Creek. Sugarhouse Pond also helped contain those high flows from Parleys Creek.

City Creek as it flows through Memory Grove in Salt Lake City.

“We released early on for the last couple of months to make space, and now we’re actively filling that space right now because, with those reservoirs, we have the two sides of the coin where we’re releasing water for flood control, but we also want to store water for later culinary use,” Stewart said.

The pond is no longer overflowing, the road is open to cars, and the creek should stay within its banks.

“We’ve been preparing for it to come cold, and then hot,” he said. “We’ve had our preparations ready to do anything that might need to be done. But the weather’s been really cooperative to us so far.”

A quick warm-up could still impact the runoff. But flooding is unlikely on those creeks.

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None of the four creeks in SLC are expected to reach flood stage