The city of Columbus is doing its part to help some Hilltop residents keep their heads above water.
Columbus is investing $2.1 million in a Hilltop stormwater project designed to relieve flooding and improve storm sewers. The project is the latest in a $70.7 million investment in stormwater projects since 2000.
The project includes new sewer lines on Midland, Clarendon and Whitethorne avenues between Eakin Road and West Mound Street, Eakin Road between Midland and Whitethorne avenues, Woodbrook Lane between Eakin Road and Early Ditch, and Eakin Road North between Midland and Clarendon avenues.
According to Public Utilities representative Rick Tilton, the project came to the Hilltop as a response to resident complaints about flooding on Midland Avenue immediately north of Eakin Road.
“We tried to focus on areas who have not gotten the attention they deserve, those who have not gotten the investments they should have,” said Councilmember Andrew Ginther, chair of the public utilities community.
Ginther explained that the project, upon completion, will bring a positive change in the quality of life of those living in the area by keeping water out of yards and basements and raising property values.
He added that flooding tends to pool and collect on sidewalks, forcing children to walk in the streets.
According to Tilton, the project will not be funded through the general budget, but through monies collected when residents pay their water and sewer bills.
Chuck Patterson, chair of the Greater Hilltop Area Commission, says that residents in the area have been complaining of flooding for nearly two years, and that it was a goal of the commission to get it resolved.
“We just make sure that whenever we hear about projects coming up or grant money, we get in there and get heard,” said Patterson.
He added that while it is not the only area on the Hilltop to have flooding issues, it is the most vocal area.
“It’s nice to know that our money is going to something useful when we pay our utility bills,” Patterson added, “It sure makes it a lot easier to pay those bills.”
The project, which started in June, is expected to be completed in the spring of 2009.