Alberta's plan for rebuilding 'reasonable' say flooded Calgarians

Calgary flood

By Katie Schneider ,Calgary Sun

Some residents hit hard by flooding welcome new provincial rules about rebuilding in flood zones, but don’t intend to leave their low-lying areas just yet.

Announced by Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths Sunday, the policies state funding will be available for homeowners in floodways to rebuild or relocate and for mitigation infrastructure to protect buildings in flood-fringe areas, such as berms following last month’s disaster.

Those living in the flood-fringe who do not implement flood measures will not be compensated in future flooding while those in floodways who choose to rebuild will see no future disaster aid.

Sunnyside resident Mike Bradfield, who lives in the flood-fringe and was hit twice by flooding since last month supports the provincial rules.

“I didn’t think they were unreasonable and I know why they released them soon because they were trying to get something out rather than wait,” he said.

However, he is more concerned with the city’s management of the sewer system, which he blames for causing his house to flood so severely.

“Why has the city and our alderman not done anything in the last 10 or 15 years and why does it have to come to the province issuing rules like this,” he said.

“If the city had done their job maybe the pronouncement from the province wouldn’t have been necessary.”

Still he doesn’t plan to relocate and will obey rules to flood-proof his home by using “common sense measures” — he is actively looking at raising the lawn and installing waterproof shutters and a metal side door.

He wonders though how the city will respond to changes made to his property.

“Say I want to raise my front lawn by two feet, is the city going to give me a lot of grief over having to get a building permit?” he said.

Still without hot water or a working furnace, Greg Heide, said he too plans to stick it out in Sunnyside by adding flood mitigation measures, and is in favour of the new policies.

“I think it was a hasty decision, not one I completely disagree with,” he said.

“I do believe there should be some sort of legislation in building practices.”

As someone who has a background in construction, he said he knows buildings can still be built in flood plains safely.

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