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Rising water impacts Hudson; closed bridge means more traffic

First Street, between Buckeye and Wisconsin streets, was covered with floodwater from the St. Croix River on Thursday morning. As of 9 a.m. Friday, June 27, the level of the river at Stillwater, Minn., was 687.5 above sea level, according to the National Weather Service. First Street begins to flood at 685.8 feet. (Hudson Star-Observer photo by Randy Hanson)1 / 5
Floodwaters from the St. Croix River have closed First Street between Buckeye and Wisconsin streets. This is the intersection of Buckeye and First, with the Lakefront Park boat launch in the background. (Hudson Star-Observer photo by Randy Hanson) 2 / 5
Much of Lakefront Park south of the dike road is under water. Hudson Boosters President Tom Smith says people will have to find a new place for viewing the Booster Days fireworks display at dusk Saturday, July 5. (Hudson Star-Observer photo by Randy Hanson)3 / 5
A sign tells people to stay out of the flooded portion of Lakefront Park south of the dike road. (Hudson Star-Observer photo by Randy Hanson)4 / 5
St. Croix Marina at the south end of First Street has more water than it needs - even for boaters. (Hudson Star-Observer photo by Randy Hanson)5 / 5

The rising waters of the St. Croix River are affecting the city of Hudson.

Monday morning, the Stillwater lift bridge was closed to traffic, sending more commuters through downtown Hudson on their way to and from jobs in the Twin Cities.

The southern half of Lakefront Park is under water, with signs warning people to stay out because of the danger of drop-offs and fast-moving water.

The Lakefront Park boat launch and the beach remain closed, too.

By Tuesday morning, the city had closed First Street between Buckeye and Wisconsin, as well as Front Street south of Interstate 94.

The high water has delayed the repaving of First Street between Buckeye and Wisconsin streets that was originally scheduled for this week.

Wednesday morning, crews from Monarch Paving Co. put a new layer of blacktop on First Street between Elm and Wisconsin streets as planned. The contractor began at Elm Street at 5 a.m. Wednesday and proceeded south to Wisconsin Street, which it reached shortly before noon.

"We're going all the way to the flood," said Trina Baxter of Monarch Paving, who was holding a sign to stop vehicles from getting in the way of the workers.

First Street was covered with floodwaters just south of Wisconsin Street.

As of 2:15 p.m. Wednesday, the river level had reached 687.15 feet above sea level -- slightly above the minor flood stage of 687 feet, which is also the level of the intersection of First and Buckeye streets.

By 9 a.m. Friday, the river level stood at 687.5 feet. The Weather Service is now predicting the river to crest Saturday at 687.7 feet, barring a significant amount of additional rain.

The Weather Service website lists a number of expected impacts from the rising water at Hudson.

It notes that the first tier of flood wall in Lakefront Park was breached at 680 feet, and the second tier, at 684 feet.

At 685 feet, several residences along the river experienced flooding in their basements, according to the Weather Service website.

It says First Street between Buckeye and Commercial streets would flood at 685.8 feet, and the Buckeye Street garage would be impacted at 686.8 feet.

The Stillwater bridge and Lakefront Park are closed until further notice.

Randy Hanson

Randy Hanson has reported for the Star-Observer since 1997. He came to Hudson after 11 years with the Inter-County Leader at Frederic, and eight years of teaching social studies. He’s a graduate of UW-Eau Claire.

(715) 426-1066
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