Two Norfolk neighborhoods picked for $112M coastal improvement project

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NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Two Norfolk neighborhoods will be taking part in a project aimed at reducing flooding.

City officials say the Chesterfield Heights and Grandy Village neighborhoods have been selected to take part in the $112 million Ohio Creek Watershed Project.

Officials say the city was awarded a $112 million grant from the National Disaster Resilience Competition for the project.

“We do need the grant,” said resident Henrietta Trotter.  “We do need it and the water does come on the streets and everything.”

According to the city’s website, the project will explore various “landscape and hardscape options” to curb flooding impacts.

Chesterfield Heights Civic League President Cheryll Sumner has been involved with the project from the start.  She said, “If we can at least mitigate the precipitation flooding, the tidal flooding, just give us some kind of protection, I think in the long run it’s going to give us some kind of protection on the groundwater seeping in.”

The project includes adding “living shorelines,” improving green spaces in the area, and reducing flooding.

“If the roads flood, it’s terrible.  You can get stuck inside the neighborhood,” Sumner said.

Plus, there are only two major roads in and out of the area.  “You have safety that’s an issue because we only have two ways in and out of the neighborhood, we are concerned about safety,” Sumner said.

Sumner knows not all of the issues will disappear, but she’s hopeful for the future.

“You can’t push that water away, we know that now,” Sumner said.  “We can’t push it away, we have to find ways to work with the water.”

A meeting is being held Wednesday night at the Grandy Village Learning Center from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.  City officials say the purpose is for people to share their thoughts on environmental impacts, both positive and negative.

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