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Dave Olson, Published November 08 2012

Oxbow demands protected golf course

FARGO – The city of Oxbow in Cass County has a list of 13 conditions that must be met before the community will accept a ring dike as the main way of mitigating impacts from a proposed diversion project.

One of the demands is that the community’s golf course be redesigned and constructed to make sure at least 18 holes will be protected within a levee.

Any existing holes that end up on the potentially wet side of a dike would still be kept intact, with the burden of maintaining them left to the Oxbow Country Club.

Oxbow residents also want any newly developed golf course to include an improved clubhouse, parking area, driving and practice range and pool facility.

Officials with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said Thursday during a meeting of the Flood Diversion Authority that they will review the requests and decide which to accept by December.

Corps officials also said the Diversion Authority would have until January to decide whether it would pay for any Oxbow demands the corps may end up rejecting.

Whether a ring dike for the communities of Oxbow, Bakke and Hickson will be included in the $1.8 billion flood control project will likely be decided in spring 2013.

Cass County Administrator Keith Berndt said one demand that may not sit well with the corps is the requirement that property owners who are not willing to reside within a levee be given buyouts.

Horace, Drayton

Also at Thursday’s meeting of the Diversion Authority, officials said an informational meeting regarding the diversion project will be held starting at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 14 in the Horace Senior Center.

Also, the corps will be co-hosting a public meeting starting at 6 p.m. Nov. 15 at the Hastings Landing restaurant in Drayton.

The purpose of the meeting is to discuss a potential fish passage project at the Drayton Dam on the Red River.

Also Thursday, the Diversion Authority voted to endorse what is known as “option A” as the southern alignment for the proposed diversion project.

The decision essentially moves the southern course of a future diversion about one mile farther north than the route currently in the federally recommended plan.

The Diversion Authority also heard from corps officials regarding the corps’ plans for the western alignment of a diversion project.

The corps now envisions a Red River diversion following a course that would be parallel to and just to the west of the existing Sheyenne Diversion.

An earlier plan had the Red River diversion essentially absorbing the Sheyenne Diversion channel.

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Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Olson at (701) 241-5555