County Storm Water’s Flood Mitigation Program Update

John Wendel
John.Wendel@MeckNC.gov
1/14/2021
County Seal and Storm Water Logo

Mecklenburg County, NC – Latest data shows 341 homes did not flood because of the County’s aggressive Flood Mitigation Program during the last heavy rain event on Nov. 12, 2020.

For the third year in a row, annual rainfall totals at the Charlotte Douglas Airport were over 50 inches with 2020 recording a whopping 58.08 inches or 17 inches above normal. One of the heaviest rain events occurred on Nov. 12, the combined moisture from Hurricane Eta and a cold front produced 2 to 5 inches of rain causing widespread flooding across Mecklenburg County. Living space flooding was reported in 55 homes and businesses in the County. Although very unfortunate for homes and businesses that flooded, there were more that did  not flood due to County Storm Water’s (STW) aggressive Flood Mitigation Program.

Latest data from STW’s Inundation Mapping and Losses Avoided Tool indicated 341 homes and businesses did not flood because they have been removed through STW’s floodplain buyout program. In this one event:

  • Losses avoided totaled more than $10.5 million
  • 400 homes or businesses did not flood
  • 700 families were not displaced or in need of emergency services (swift water rescue)
  • 1700 individuals were not impacted
  • Sheltering and support from the other agencies like Red Cross, Team Rubicon, etc. was minimized

Throughout the Program’s history more than $30 million has been saved by removing high risk properties from the FEMA regulated floodplain. The overall benefits from the buyout program is that the County is safer and more resilient, while also supporting other community values like improved water quality, increase in open space and expanding the greenway system.

Media Contact: John Wendel, Sr. Communication Specialist, John.Wendel@MeckNC.gov, 704-577-0553