American River Levees
The Lower American River Levee System comprises 26 miles of levees between Folsom Dam and downtown Sacramento. The levees play a crucial role in protecting communities in the Arden-Arcade and North Sacramento areas as well as communities to the south in downtown Sacramento, Land Park, Pocket, Meadowview and South Sacramento. As a result of the flood events of 1986 and 1997, it was recognized that robust improvements were necessary to bring the levee system up to modern day standards. Between 1998 and 2016, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) installed seepage cutoff walls to depths of 80 feet, raised and stabilized levees, and corrected erosion problems along 25 miles of the system.
USACE is planning to construct 11 miles of erosion protection along portions of both the north and south banks of the American River, beginning as early as 2021. Once completed, the cumulative flood control improvements will allow the levee system to safely handle sustained flows of up to 160,000 cubic feet per second in the event of an extreme flood event in the American River watershed.