FEMA grant approved for Pelham flood project
By MOLLY DAVIDSON / Staff Writer
PELHAM—Pelham received approval for a $1.237 million grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to combat flooding on Shelby County 261.
“We started this just over six and a half years ago,” Pelham City Council President Rick Hayes said of the project that started under previous Mayor Don Murphy’s administration.
The flood mitigation project encompasses an area beginning with a retention pond in Helena and continuing along Shelby County 261 into Pelham. The project is aimed at “increasing water storage to hold flood water during a storm” through “enlarging and deepening” the retention pond in Helena and strategically adding several other ponds, Hayes said.
The entire project is estimated to cost $1.649 million, with the FEMA grant funding around 75 percent of the project, a “big win” for the city, Rick Hayes said during a May 12 City Council meeting.
The city will begin to move forward with the project, however several legal steps need to be completed before construction can begin, Pelham City Engineer Jesse Jowers explained.
Property owners must be contacted for property acquisition and legal paperwork must be completed by city attorneys before the construction phase can start, Jowers said.
Although Jowers said he was “not able to say at this point” when construction may begin, he said the project to alleviate flooding in Pelham neighborhoods along 261 is underway.