Grafton Preparing To Be Cut Off By Rising Rivers

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GRAFTON, IL (KTVI)-Grafton expects the rising Mississippi and Illinois rivers will cut off access to the tourist town along the Great River Road sometime Sunday.  The crest is predicted at thirty and a half feet.

Website: Check Area River Levels

Mayor Tom Thompson believes this year's flood will be similar to what the town experienced in 2008 and not anything as devastating as the record breaking flood of 1993.

"We're going to get through this flood.  We've done our planning and our flood roads are prepared," Thompson said.

Drivers will need to use residential roads to get to Route 3 that will take them to Alton, IL.

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A few businesses close to the water have moved out merchandise and equipment.  One restaurant, "The Loading Zone", expects to have a foot of water inside by the time the Mississippi River crests.

Town ball fields and its riverfront bike trail and parks are already flooded.  But few homes will be impacted.  Most people moved out of the flood plain area after the 1993 floods.

The Grafton Ferry to Missouri was closed this week.  Nearby ferries including the Golden Eagle, Brussels and Winfield are also closed.

The inconvenience of periodic floods has not impacted the town.  "We've had a boon in housing here in the last 18 months  because people want to be close to the water," said Thompson pointing to new condominium developments.

Betsey.Bruce@tvstl.com

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