Developer cited in Bettendorf mudslide

Published: Jul. 5, 2022 at 11:13 PM CDT
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BETTENDORF, Iowa (KWQC) - More than 24 hours after a mudslide flooded ‘The Manor’ Condos in Bettendorf, city leaders confirmed the developer of a nearby construction site was reprimanded on Tuesday morning in connection with the incident.

At the city council meeting, officials said they issued a citation to Dan Dolan Homes. the developer behind the Cottages at McClellan Heights project on Kimberly road.

According to the National Weather Service, more than 1.5 inches of rain fell in Bettendorf leading up to the mudslide yesterday. Meanwhile, the city reported over 2 inches of water at its gauge on the Palmer Hills Golf Course and called the rainfall a “10 -to-25-year storm event.”

On Tuesday morning crews were out fixing the problem. According to City Administrator Decker Ploehn the developer is working with the homeowners association at ‘The Manor’ to address any damages.

“There’s still some work to be out there,” Public Works Director Brian Schmidt said. “But, if we get a rain event like we did yesterday, I’m pretty confident it will be detained within that area.”

City Engineer Brent Morlok said the issue arose when the contractor placed two straw wattles, used for erosion control, to help guide water into the intake pipe on the construction site.

“They should not have put the top one on place,” Morlok said. “That ended up silting in and completely clogging the outflow, so you were getting no stormwater in the pipe and it all discharged off the site.”

Even with the new measures in place, one resident said the efforts were too little too late.

“This should’ve been foreseen and it should’ve been taken care of,” Beverly Strayhall said. ”This is not acceptable and you don’t just get to say, ‘Gosh we had a lot of rain, too bad.’”

Another resident explained to the city council the damages that resulted in the mudslide.

“I’m worried about mold and mildew,” Connie Wilson said. “[Water and mud] was coming through the walls and down the walls of the basement.”

Bettendorf City council gave preliminary approval to the Cottages at McClellan Heights development in August of 2021.

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