In his latest “Upwords,” Pensacola Mayor Ashton Hayward writes that the city has taken action on 62 different flood recovery projects, completing 37 of them.
He said, “Staff is working through the FEMA process simultaneously and I expect the City to be fully reimbursed for these disaster-related expenditures”
The mayor said that his staff has focused on identifying solutions which have the greatest impact for the greatest number of citizens for the least amount of taxpayer dollars. Four engineering studies–covering Piedmont Road, Aragon, Long Hollow, and Downtown–have been commissioned.Two have been completed and the other two will be completed in November.
Water flows downhill so it’s no surprise that upstream flooding affects the downtown capacity and areas like Long Hollow and Aragon. “Stormwater runoff doesn’t stop at the city limits line,” said Hayward. “Seriously addressing this issue means working hand-in-hand with our friends at the County on a comprehensive solution.”
The mayor has contracted with an expert mitigation consultant, Arcadis, and former County Administrator Bob McLaughlin. Arcadis is “working to leverage FEMA 404 money to purchase houses which flood repeatedly and replace them with stormwater infrastructure.” McLaughlin is there to “help manage the prevention phase of our strategy and identify funding solutions.”
Engineering studies and project updates are available at www.cityofpensacola.com/recovery.