Residents on Jeremiah Drive were informed by email Wednesday that the NCDOT, working in coordination with our local delegations, will be funding improvements to Jeremiah Drive to alleviate the …
Thanks for reading Chatham County’s leading news source! Please consider supporting community journalism by subscribing to the News + Record – you can do so by clicking here.
Residents on Jeremiah Drive were informed by email Wednesday that the NCDOT, working in coordination with our local delegations, will be funding improvements to Jeremiah Drive to alleviate the flooding during rain events.
Residents of Jeremiah Drive, which is located adjacent to Jordan Lake, are regular victims of flooding. With the recent hurricanes, residents had repeatedly been forced to use boats and kayaks to leave their homes.
“The US Army Corps of Engineering controls the elevation of Jordan Lake and they must consider many factors to determine when to release water,” NCDOT Division Engineer Brandon Jones said. “This past fall we have had record rainfalls over a very large area of the watersheds and downstream rivers. This has meant the road has been flooded for a much longer duration than in the past.”
The residents brought their concerns to both their legislative leaders and the Chatham County Board of Commissioners. The local delegation reached out to the NCDOT, specifically Jones, to work together to resolve the problem, according to Rep. Robert Reives. Jones immediately responded to the request and reached out to his superiors while residents continued to inform the group of the changing situation in real time.
“The local county officials, Senator Valerie Foushee, and Representative Robert Reives have strongly supported a resolution to this issue,” Jones said. “NCDOT Secretary Jim Trogdon and Division 8 Board of Transportation Member, Pat Molamphy, fully support helping the residents and have tasked me to make this happen.”
The project will raise Jeremiah Drive six to seven feet. Jones has been working with the Army Corps of Engineers who Jones said have been “extremely helpful in guiding” them through their processes and their required permitting.
“NCDOT is committed to funding the improvements and constructing this much needed project,” Jones said. “Our current timeline for completing this project is July 2019 and we are making every effort to meet or improve upon this timeline.”
“This is a great example of how government ought to work,” Reives said. “It was a really great process to be a part of because to me, that’s how the government should work.”
Reives voiced his appreciation for the residents’ role in the process. Noting that while the residents were “getting hit” by successive floods, they were patient, understood the process, and participated in finding a resolution.
Reives also praised Jones for his efforts.
“Brandon is a great example of how a government employee or liaison should work for the people,” he said.
“I am excited to be a part of this project that will improve the lives of the residents of Jeremiah Drive,” Jones said.