US Army Corps of Engineers
Nashville District Website

Cumberland River and Browns, Richland, Whites Creeks Feasibility Study

FACT SHEET (As of May 2018)

Published Jan. 21, 2015

 Cumberland River and Browns, Richland, Whites Creeks Feasibility Study 


AUTHORIZATION: Section 205 of the 1948 Flood Control Act (P.L. 80-858), as amended.

TYPE OF PROJECT: Feasibility Study

LOCATION: Metropolitan Nashville – Davidson County is near the middle of Cumberland River Basin at Mile 192.  Nashville, the state Capital of Tennessee, is in the north central part of the state.  


CONGRESSIONAL INTEREST: Cooper (TN), Corker (TN), Alexander (TN)


NON-FEDERAL SPONSOR: Metropolitan Nashville and Davidson County (Metro).



·    As a result of record flooding in May 2010, a reconnaissance report was completed in 2013 to evaluate water resources issues including flood damage reduction, ecosystem restoration, navigation, water supply, and hydropower within the Cumberland River Basin.

·    A flood risk management feasibility study for Nashville and Davidson County is being conducted under the Section 205 Authority. The feasibility report will inventory flood damages, evaluate potential flood damage reduction measures, and recommend feasible measures for construction.  The study will build on the evaluations completed by Metro Nashville under their Unified Flood Preparedness Program.  Measures to be further evaluated include (but are not limited to) home buyouts, streambank modification, bridge modification, and detention structure(s) along Richland, Browns and Whites Creeks.  


IMPORTANCE:  On May 1-2, 2010, record-breaking rains struck West and Middle Tennessee with local amounts of 18-20 inches to the south and west of Nashville.  The heaviest rain occurred in the uncontrolled basins of the Cumberland River, which resulted in widespread, devastating flash flooding, as well as unprecedented flooding along the Cumberland River and its tributaries.  The highest stage of the Cumberland River in downtown Nashville exceeded the previous regulated flood of record by over 4 feet.  There were 11 flooding fatalities on uncontrolled tributaries to the Cumberland River directly attributed to this event in Nashville.  Estimates of property damage are in excess of $2 billion in Nashville alone.


Status: The project delivery team develop the final array of alternatives to reduce flood damages on all four streams. Draft recommendations for tributary portions of the study were presented to the vertical team on August 25, 2017. A draft report for internal review (DQC) is scheduled for June 11, 2018. A draft report milestone is scheduled for August 2018. The current study recommendation include significant measures to reduce future damages via both structural and nonstructural solutions across all four tributary streams.


BUDGET ($): Estimated study costs are shown below.



Feasibility Phase

Total Estimated Cost



Federal Cost Estimate



Non-Federal Cost Estimate






Federal Funds Data



Allocation thru FY 2015



Balance to Complete



President’s Budget for FY2018






FY2018 Scheduled Work:  Complete re-evaluation of alternative plans including benefits, costs, and potential environmental impacts. Gross appraisals caused a reformulation of nonstructural alternatives. The draft report is under development with a targeted June completion. Internal reviews would occur from June-August 2018.

For more information regarding the Nashville Cumberland River Watershed Flood Risk Management Project, contact Tom Herbert, CELRN-PM-P, phone: (615) 736-7194, email: