West of the Napoleon, North Dakota, in Logan County, McKenna Lake comprises two water bodies: North Lake and West Lake. The lakes sit atop the Napoleon aquifer and are fed by surface-water tributaries as well as a tributary meltwater channel. While the city of Napoleon is more than a half-mile east and 12 feet above the lake, residents have observed a correlation between high lake levels and high groundwater levels in town and in the surrounding area.
Residents approached the Logan County Water Resource Board about finding a long-term solution to the ongoing water issues, including high groundwater in Napoleon that resulted in flooded basements, extensive operation of sump pumps, and damage to streets due to frost heave; inundation of agricultural land in the area north of McKenna Lake; and periodic plugging of the natural outfall.
Barr is developing an integrated groundwater–surface-water model to help assess the association between McKenna Lake's water levels and groundwater elevations in Napoleon and the surrounding area. The model will also be used to study flow equalization between West Lake and North Lake, discharge through the natural outlet, and resident-suggested options for addressing the water issues.
Vice President Civil Engineer
Water Resources Engineer