U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Will Not Proceed with Proposed Floodwall at Belle Haven

In 2022, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) proposed to build a six- to seven-foot-high wall with removable “aluminum stop-log closures” at the street intersections just west of the George Washington Memorial Parkway.


In April 2024, the USACE published its Final Integrated Feasibility Report & Environmental Assessment posted at https://usace.contentdm.oclc.org/digital/collection/p16021coll7/id/25592  

The 284-page Environmental Assessment states that the Corps will not go forward with the proposed Belle Haven floodwall at this time.  The document explains, on pages vii and 234-235, that while the proposed Belle Haven plan “is cost effective and yielded positive annualized net benefits,” the Corps received 196 comments expressing “significant opposition to the Belle Haven alignment,” including that the floodwall should be shifted onto National Park Service (NPS) property. The Environmental Assessment stated that shifting the floodwall onto federal parkland is “more expensive and not economically justified” and that the NPS is “not supportive” of any structure on park property.  

The Environmental Assessment states the following: “After thorough discussion of the Belle Haven floodwall and levee plan with the stakeholders and community, Fairfax County sent USACE a letter on 13 March 2023 stating that they ‘will not support the project as proposed at the present time, and thus will not be providing the USACE with a letter of intent.’ Subsequently without a non-federal sponsor for implementation, no further analysis was undertaken for the Belle Haven floodwall and levee plan…”

During the earlier public comment period, the FODM submitted comments which raised a number of concerns about the proposed Belle Haven floodwall.

You can find more background, including FODM’s comments on the proposal, on our Taking Action page here.

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