Floodplain building may grow amid drainage spending - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Floodplain building may grow amid drainage spending

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By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - The Dougherty County commission continues to consider changes to an ordinance that will allow construction in the most dangerous part of a floodplain.

Currently, only limited construction is allowed in floodways, but the county is considering an ordinance change that would allow building there with a no-rise certificate.

That means engineers would have to sign off on plans which would show there would be no adverse impact up stream or downstream because of that construction.

The city will also consider the same changes.  Several other cities throughout the state allow construction in floodways, thought it is discouraged.

Dougherty County commissioners plan to spend close to a million dollars to begin improving storm drainage in the county.

After more than 20 inches of rain fell in parts of the county in early spring, 48 locations throughout the county had major flooding problems.  Public works director Larry Cook and his staff have identified 11 projects they can begin immediately to reduce problems in the future. 

Several homes in the Mockingbird area of Radium Springs were flooded.  The drainage improvements won't guarantee there won't be any more problems, but it should help with the flow of water.

"It won't actually prevent it," said Cook. "We'll try and improve those areas.  We got that volume of rain, 22 inches of rain, there's no way our system can handle that.  What we're hoping to do is those isolated areas that was holding water, we'll be able to move those in a timely manner than we were during this past event."

Most of the improvements will be paid for with sales tax dollars.

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