Stormwater Overview
Stormwater Overview

Shawnee’s network of more than 220 miles of stormwater pipe, ditches, and channels is one or our greatest assets. It is also one of our largest responsibilities with an estimated maintenance cost of $2.47 million per year. City staff and leaders continue to devote significant efforts on continuing to protect this asset. This web page is devoted to highlighting the discussion and for providing links to the various presentations and meeting minutes on the subject.

What condition are our pipes in today?
The following rating system is used to classify pipe condition:
RatingDefinitionCurrent % of Pipes
1Good: no cracks, no defects, no corrosion31.9%
2Fair: minor defects/cracking, joint damage, deterioration36.4%
3Repair: pipe patching needed soon, monitor pipe for further deterioration23.2%
4Replace: pipe deformation/ major cracks/ major corrosion8.5%

Those pipes rated a 3 or 4 equate to 57 miles of drainage system that currently needs major repairs/total replacement or will need it within the next 20 years. Total cost for those repairs is estimated at a cost of approximately $114 million. Included in these repairs are approximately $8 million worth of major projects that have been deferred and currently unfunded.

Issues the City is facing:
Over 56% (101.5 miles) of the storm water drainage system is CMP (Corrugated Metal Pipe). The life cycle expectancy of CMP is 30–35 years. The average age of the City’s CMP is 31 years old with 50% being 20 years or older.

The City has had many pipe failures under major City streets over the past few years, and are aware of potentially many more. Here are just a few examples with pictures and project costs.

65th Street Pipe Failure (2013)
Quivira Road Pipe Failure (2016)
Holiday Drive Pipe Failure (2016)

Why doesn’t the City use the Parks and Pipes Sales tax to help address this issue?
In November of 2014, Shawnee voters approved a 10-year renewal of the 1/8-cent Parks and Pipes sales tax, which provides dedicated funding for improvements to the city’s parks and stormwater systems. From 2003 to 2013, Parks and Pipes revenues provided $6.1 million for 19 stormwater projects across the city. While the Parks and Pipes tax revenue is important, those funds are insufficient to address Shawnee’s critical stormwater needs.

What is the $36 annual Stormwater Utility fee included on my property tax bill used for?
The Stormwater Utility fee is used to inspect stormwater structures and drainage pipes. It is used to repair and replace about .25 miles of pipe per year. The utility is also used to pay for crews who clean inlets, clear, repair or replace driveway culverts, pipes, channels and roadside ditches.

The Stormwater Utility was first implemented in 2005 and has not been increased since its inception. It generates about $1.7 million annually.

Where can I learn more?
A great place to see additional information on the stormwater management program discussion is to take a look at the Power Point presentations to the City Council and read the CityLine articles from the past few years. We’ve attached those here and provided links to the associated meeting minutes.