|PHOTO BY MARIANO ROSALES
We all remember “Sploshkosh 2010,” when a record 10 inches of rain in the 24 days prior to opening day turned much of Camp Scholler into a quagmire.
So we went to work. In the weeks and months following the 2010 convention, extensive storm water movement projects were done on the AirVenture grounds. Water-flow improvements in several Camp Scholler areas included building expanded channels designed to move storm water off the grounds to natural runoff paths more quickly and keep camping areas drier.
Among the first areas crews tackled was near 28th Street in the campground. A new north/south drainage area was established near campsites most severely affected where sites and roadways became impassible.
In addition, campsites south of Lindbergh Road and west of 28th Street were re-leveled. That specific area will not be open during AirVenture 2011 to allow it time to firmly settle.
“We actually caught a break in those areas, because we discovered old farm field drain tile that still existed but had been covered with sediment and stones through the years,” said Steve Taylor, EAA’s buildings and grounds manager. “We were able to use that and a catch basin that we also uncovered.”
Other areas with expanded drain channels include:
- Paul’s Woods, just west of Knapp Street Road
- Warbirds Camping and the Red Lot auto parking area, with expanded drainage between the Civil Air Patrol compound and the North 40
- Waukau Avenue, just north of the Blue Lot auto parking area and the Nature Center
Work in the Vintage aircraft parking area near the Hangar Café and in the Ultralight area was also completed.
“Our goal is to keep water moving off the site and keep as many parking and camping areas as usable as possible even during summers with heavy rains,” Taylor said. Seasonal rains this far show the improvements worked very well.
Other site improvements this year included extensive chip sealing of internal roads, notably the Foundation Road traffic loop used by thousands of vehicles each day to exit the AirVenture site.