How Ellettsville is trying to fix its known flooding problem

Zach Kortea has lived in Ellettsville for about four years but his place is still packed up in plastic containers and his walls are bare.

It’s not that he hasn’t unpacked, but rather he can’t predict the next time his downtown apartment will flood, displacing him and damaging his belongings. He’s moving soon, and the flooding was a factor in that decision.

“You got your whole life piled up in boxes like you’re going to move,” Kortea said. “But really you’re just trying to look out for this again, so you don’t lose anything.”

New town development plans are in the works, and a path to control the flooding problem is intertwined within other beautification and growth efforts. Efforts to curb this environmental problem may begin later this year.

Almost a year after Kirkwood flooding: Meteorologist: Deadly June 18/19 Bloomington storms were a once-in-a-century event

Reader submitted photo of flooding in Ellettsville in 2019

The Envision Ellettsville Vision Plan, which was presented to the community last week, maps out the community’s potential residential and commercial growth. Revitalizing downtown, one of the target areas for improvement, is dependent on controlling the often unexpected and burdensome flooding issues.

“Flooding is a primary challenge for downtown business owners but not because of the physical damage that it could do but because flood insurance is so expensive,” the plan reads. “Most small businesses can’t afford it, therefore they can’t locate downtown.”

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