FEMA and the Kansas Department of Emergency Management distributed $1,167,222 in hazard mitigation grant funding to the City of Manhattan to purchase flood-prone properties from voluntary and willing homeowners, remove the structures, and preserve the land as open space. These grants require a local match of 25%, which is a total of $389,075, and which has been funded from the City’s Stormwater Utility Fund.
The mitigation project purchased two flood-prone homes in 2017, two additional homes in 2018 and will purchase two more homes in 2019. Five of these homes were impacted by the September 2018 Wildcat Creek flood event, or would have been impacted if the homes were not removed in 2017 and early 2018. The mitigation projects will create over 7.25 acres of open space to be used as a recreation area or returned to the floodplain for natural floodplain management.
The home at 100 Dix Drive was purchased through this grant because it was in the high-risk floodplain, damaged in 1993 and was severely damaged in a fire in 2016. The grant was able to remove a home that would have been otherwise unable to be rebuilt because of the City’s Floodplain Regulations. The City’s Park and Recreation Department has worked with the surrounding neighborhood to develop concepts for a small neighborhood park to be installed on the property to preserve the open space and make it an amenity for the neighborhood. This park project is awaiting funding.
The City is seeking additional grants to purchase more flood-prone homes that have been impacted by past floods to better protect residents and business owners. For more information about the program or flood issues, please email Chad Bunger at firstname.lastname@example.org.