Public Notice for Virginia Drive Hazard Mitigation Grant

HMGP 4283-38-R Virginia Drive Roadway and Drainage Improvement Phase II
March 30, 2020

The Federal Emergency Management Agency and Florida Division of Emergency Management have received the following application for Federal grant funding.  Final notice is hereby given of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) consideration to provide funding in the form of Hazard Mitigation Grant Program. Funds will be provided in accordance with Section 404 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, Public Law 93-288, as amended.

Under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), federal actions must be reviewed and evaluated for feasible alternatives and for social, economic, historic, environmental, legal, and safety considerations. Under Executive Order (EO) 11988 and EO 11990 FEMA is required to consider alternatives to and to provide public notice of any proposed actions in or affecting floodplains or wetlands. EO 12898 also requires FEMA to provide the opportunity for public participation in the planning process and to consider potential impacts to minority or low-income populations.

Funding for the proposed project will be conditional upon compliance with all applicable federal, tribal, state and local laws, regulations, floodplain standards, permit requirements and conditions.

Applicant: City of Lake Helen

Project Title: HMGP 4283-38-R Virginia Drive Roadway and Drainage Improvement Phase II

Location of Proposed Work: The area affected by this project consists of homes in the following locations: Virginia Drive, Lake Helen from Summit Avenue to Carmen Drive.

Proposed Work and Purpose: Currently, the portion of Virginia Drive west of Summit Ave is cracking and sloping down towards the north due to a poor, organic material being used as a filler during the road’s construction. In order to stabilize the road, up to four feet of the material will need to be removed and replaced with geotextile grid which will be used to build the road back up to the design elevation to ensure a smooth roadway. In addition, two swales and inlets alongside the south side of the road will be built to ensure there is sufficient drainage for stormwater management concerns. The collected stormwater runoff will be routed to a mitered end section on the north side of the road. The Contractor shall perform all work required by the Contract Documents for the completion of the Virginia Drive Roadway and Drainage Improvement Project.

Project Alternatives: The alternatives to the project that have been and will be considered are:

  1. No action taken
  2. Resurface road with asphalt
  3. Rebuild the road only without removal of organic materials
  4. Roadway abandonment and reclamation of the road by the wetland.

These alternatives to the project are not viable for the following concerns:

Alternative 1) repetitive flooding and road deterioration is not alleviated and the needs of the community would not be served.

Alternative 2) would not provide citizens fair stewardship of City finances. Resurfacing the road will not repair the damage to the roadways current surface, base, subbase, and would not correct the core problem of the organic material leading to the damaged roadway. (e.g. a complete waste of funds).

Alternative 3) in addition to the same reasons why alternative 2 is not viable, alternative 3 repairs the road, but does not correct the core problem of organics. Building roadways over organic material is impractical and a recommended practice and would significantly increase costs.

Alternative 4) Would ruin property values and would result in litigation for home access, valves, and eliminate essential City services. Would not retain the fabric of the community.

Comment Period: Comments are solicited from the public; local, state or federal agencies; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of the proposed project.  The comments should be made in writing and addressed to the Florida Division of Emergency Management, Mitigation, 2555 Shumard Oak Blvd., Tallahassee, FL 32399-2100.  These are due within 30 days of this notice April 30, 2020.  The State will forward comments to applicable regulatory agencies as needed.  Interested persons may submit comments, obtain more detailed information about the proposed action, or request a copy of the findings by contacting:

Becky Witte, City Administrator   (386) 228-2358,                                                    

Teresa Sanders, State Environmental Specialist   (850) 815-4521
Florida Division of Emergency Management                                        >

To place on City Website – Homepage: from March 30, 2020 until April 20, 2020

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