Portions of McGilchrist closed due to flooding as heavy rain continues

Update: McGilchrist Street reopened Wednesday around 4:30 p.m. according to Trevor Smith, city spokesman.

City crews closed Southeast McGilchrist Street for over two hours hours Wednesday afternoon due to flooding on the roadway following several days of heavy rain, but Salem hasn’t seen widespread flooding.

The road closed from Southeast 16th Street to Southeast 22nd Street from around 2:15 p.m to 4 p.m. Portions of 16th Street were also closed, said Trevor Smith, city spokesman. City road closures are listed on a map here.

Smith said sections of the city have seen localized flooding over several days. Creeks running through Salem are not flooding, stream gauges show.

Rainfall gauges show many areas of Salem have received more than 2 inches of water in the past day.

North Salem High School has recorded 2.38 inches in the last 48 hours, and 1.22 inches in the past 12 hours.

Davis Road in south Salem hit 1.49 inches in the past 12 hours, and 2.9 inches in the past two days. That’s an amount only seen about once every two to five years, according to the Mid-Willamette Valley High Water Watch.

River Road Park in north Salem received 2.02 inches in the past two days, and Eola Drive in west Salem received 2.36 inches.

A flood advisory from the National Weather Service remains in effect for Salem through 1 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 7.

“Overflowing poor drainage areas have already caused minor flooding in the advisory area,” the advisory said.

As of 1 p.m. Wednesday, the weather service said 0.5 to 2 more inches of rain could fall in the area by evening.

Contact reporter Rachel Alexander: [email protected] or 503-575-1241.

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Rachel Alexander is Salem Reporter’s managing editor. She joined Salem Reporter when it was founded in 2018 and covers city news, education, nonprofits and a little bit of everything else. She’s been a journalist in Oregon and Washington for a decade. Outside of work, she’s a skater and board member with Salem’s Cherry City Roller Derby and can often be found with her nose buried in a book.