Ellicott City flooding plan put to the test

Halloween night brought a lot of rain in short time in Ellicott City, Maryland. So, how did the city’s flood prevention plan hold up?

Over the past three years, Ellicott City has seen two rounds of historic flooding, leading Howard County Executive Calvin Ball to initiate the “Safe and Sound Flood Mitigation and Public Safety Plan.”

Though still in its early stages, the plan got put to the test when over 2 inches of rain fell Thursday night.

There was some flooding according to Ball: “Around 10:15 p.m. the water in the West End overran its banks and we had to close down Main Street from Rogers Avenue to the county line but, luckily, we were able to reopen it shortly after.”

He believes part of the reason things weren’t worse is because they have already done a lot of work, removing 4 tons of debris from the waterway as part of the new plan.

“Tree limbs, rocks, things of that nature that clog up the ability for the water to flow more freely,” Ball said. “So, by continuing to keep that clean, the work we’ve done upstream, we’ve begun to prepare much better than we were.”

But, he added that there is much more to be done. “Our Safe and Sound Plan is a five-year plan, so it’s going to take five fiscal years to work through,” Ball said.

Ellicott City will start the next round of debris removal on Monday.

Michelle Murillo

Michelle Murillo has been a part of the WTOP family since 2014. She started her career in Central Florida before working in radio in New York City and Philadelphia.

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