Jordan flood acquisition homes

To make room for levee improvements along Sand Creek, the city of Jordan would need to buy out three homes — including this one on First Street West — and the rear portions of 15 other properties, most of which have garages.

The Jordan City Council may move forward with the construction of a levee along Sand Creek after hearing supportive feedback from some of the homeowners who would lose their property to the project.

The project would curb runoff flooding by constructing a levee along Sand Creek between Varner and Syndicate Streets. To make room for the levee, the city would need to buy out three homes and the rear portions of 15 other properties, most of which have garages. The city would pay fair market prices for the property.

About 20 people attended an informational meeting hosted by the city on May 22 to gauge homeowners’ thoughts on partial or complete acquisition of properties. Questionnaires were returned by residents before, during and after the meeting. Nine questionnaires were returned as of June 12.

According to a report from City Engineer Mike Waltman, seven of nine respondents were supportive of full acquisition of their property at fair market value, six of nine were open to partial acquisition and six of nine were supportive of a special assessment in replacement of flood insurance premiums (two did not respond to the question).

The levee would remove from a floodplain 64 properties now paying a combined $130,000 annually in flood insurance premiums, as well as 47 additional properties whose owners don’t have to buy insurance.

It’s all part of a series of flood control measures aimed at protecting Jordan from a disastrous 100-year flood, at a cost of $11.4 million. Waltman said the last time Jordan experienced a flood of that magnitude was in 1960.

Waltman’s report also indicates some property owners were vocal about a flood control solution being overdue and that all property owners paying flood insurance premiums were frustrated by the cost of insurance.

The cost of the project, which also includes a stormwater pond near Syndicate Street and diversion measures in Valley Green Park, could be covered by a mix of funding, including special assessments, general tax increases and state Department of Natural Resources hazard mitigation funding. DNR funds could cover a large amount and come from a competitive program that requires a 50 percent local match, capped at $2.4 million for Jordan.

The city council voted 5-1 Monday night to direct staff to apply for the DNR hazard mitigation funding.


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