Amid Record-High Rainfall, Flooding Persists In Kalamazoo County

Nov 9, 2018

Groundwater sits relatively close to the surface in many parts of Kalamazoo County. In the areas shown in red, the depth to groundwater is less than two feet. See the full map at https://www.kalcounty.com/drain/new_pdfs/depthtowater_portrait.pdf
Credit Kalamazoo County Drain Commissioner's Office

Flooding is still plaguing some parts of Kalamazoo County. Areas of Mattawan, Portage and Texas Township have had exceptionally high groundwater for months. That’s flooded basements and forced the closure of a few roads. 

At a county board meeting last week, Tom Rogers suggested that he and other homeowners around Texas Township are in crisis.

"What’s going to happen, if we get a normal winter of gaining at least a foot between now and spring, we’re going to have a lot more houses flooded out there," he said.

Kalamazoo Drain Commissioner Pat Crowley says records dating back to 1847 show the area has gotten an exceptional amount of rain in recent months - about 49 inches in the 12 months prior to September.

"Which indeed was the greatest amount of rainfall ever recorded - over 12 inches over the average," she said.

Crowley says county and township officials are studying possible remedies for the flooding. But she warns that none of those options would be easy or cheap.