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Plans for flooding prevention underway in Annapolis after heavy rains

Here's your Friday afternoon news round up | 04/12/2024
Here's your Friday afternoon news round up | 04/12/2024 01:56

BALTIMORE -- Heavy rains overnight brought significant flooding to downtown Annapolis for the second time this year.

Water levels reached 4.2 feet, about a foot less than Annapolis saw in January, but it was still enough to cause a major headache for those who live and work in the city, along with businesses.

"It's kind of a regular thing for locals here most photographers love it, but for businesses, it's no good," Jarvin hernandez said.

It's only been three months since the last significant flood hit historic downtown. While flooding is not uncommon for the low-lying coastal city, Mayor Gavin Buckley says rising sea levels are making it worse.

"The businesses on dock street are flooded again, a lot of them are just coming back from the third-highest flooding day that we had in January. So, another hard day for Annapolis," Buckley said.

"There's been an alarming amount of high water days already this year, this is going to be an El Niño year, so we are definitely concerned," Buckley said.

The city has plans to redesign the city dock to protect the historic downtown from up to eight feet of flooding - but it's a couple of years away.

"This hurts a lot of businesses and I think definitely if they do something here it's going to improve a lot," Hernandez said.

In the meantime, Mayor Buckley says the city will give shops on Dock Street flood barriers to put in their doorways. But it's just a band-aid. Buckley says there are hopes to break ground on the project after the boat show this fall, because this latest flood shows a permanent solution can't wait.

"We're trying to accelerate the construction project so we can save the historic district and the downtown," Buckley explained.

Friday, officials announced, the City of Annapolis received more than $3 million in direct congressional funding for city dock and gateway park. $1.38 million will go toward flood protection at the city dock, with $850,000 for the new waterfront park. The remaining $850,000 will fund the construction of Gateway Park on Rowe Boulevard.

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