The number of visitors at the Mississippi Valley Welcome Center in Le Claire has dropped some now that Interstate 80 has re-opened. The interstate highway was closed last Thursday evening by floodwaters. Beth Payne of the welcome center says that caused hundreds of people to stop and ask for help.
Payne says a lot of people didn’t understand what was going on. "They saw the signs that I-80 was closed…and the first initial reaction was just to freak out," Payne says. She says they had a lot of people who were "disgruntled." Payne says they worked with the travelers to explain the detour.
Payne says they understood why the people were upset and not looking forward to an hour-and-a-half detour, so they just tried to make the best of it. Payne says it was hard for people to understand how the flooding was impacting the highway east of Iowa City.
But, today Payne says the evidence of the flooding can be seen in the nearby Quad Cities. Payne says the welcome center sits on the highest point in LeClaire, so it isn’t impacted. She says they have a welcome center in downtown Davenport that’s near the River City Casino that’s completely underwater from the flooding Mississippi River.
Payne says the city’s baseball stadium was also impacted by flooding. The Modern Woodman Park, formerly know as John O’Donnell stadium is completely covered by water. Payne says the Quad Cities is used to dealing with the flooding, but this year is unusual as the water has been high a coupel of different times.