Guilford County is about to buy two houses that flood badly just about any time it rains – but county emergency officials say they consider those houses a good buy anyway.
That’s because it’s all part of a plan by the Federal Emergency Management Agency – better known as FEMA – and by North Carolina Emergency Management, to reduce the flooding of occupied houses in the county before future storms hit.
To that end, Guilford County is planning to use federal grant money for the proposed project called simply the “Guilford County Acquisition Project” in which the county buys two constantly waterlogged properties on Bellflower Lane in eastern Guilford County.
This will be a voluntary acquisition where Guilford County uses federal money to buy the land and houses from the willing sellers who are tired of living in a flood-prone area. Both properties will then be deeded as open space in perpetuity and will be returned to their natural state.
Don Campbell, the emergency management division director for Guilford County Emergency Services, said that, after every major disaster, the federal government does an assessment and attempts to mitigate the damage from future storms.
One of the methods is to buy flood prone properties and get rid of the houses on those properties.
Campbell said the last time this was done in this area was about 15 years ago.
“It happens a lot out at the coast,” he said.
Campbell added that one benefit is that those families won’t have to be rescued from those residences anymore as they have been in the past.
As part of the grant process, there’s a call for comments from interested parties and the public as well as from local, state or federal agencies in order “to consider and evaluate the impacts of the proposed project.”
Any comments should be made in writing and addressed to Guilford County Emergency Services, Attn: Mr. Taylor Jones, 1002 Meadowood Road, Greensboro, NC 27409, or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by Thursday, October 31, 2019.