The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has awarded an $8.5 million contract for closing one of the breaches on a Missouri River levee.
Closing the breach northwest of Bartlett, Iowa, is necessary so other repairs to flood damage, notably fixing Interstate 29, can proceed.
The contract went to Newt Marine Service of Dubuque.
Jeremy Szynskie, project manager for the corps, said the project was difficult because officials had to figure out how to access materials needed to fill the hole. The contractor will bring in two to three smaller dredges to extract sand from the land side of the levee.
There are more than 500 miles of levees on the Missouri, Platte and Elkhorn Rivers and their tributaries that have experienced significant flood damage, including 50 breaches, according to the corps. Repairs are expected to take a significant amount of time.
An elevated risk of flooding remains until all the levees are repaired.