BEAUFORT, S.C. (April 27, 2023) – The City of Beaufort will receive a $7.5 million grant to address stormwater infrastructure improvements in the Charles/Craven streets and Port Republic/Carteret streets drainage areas. The grant, from the South Carolina Office of Resilience, will address long-term drainage improvements that are part of the City’s current Downtown/The Point Stormwater Drainage Project.
The announcement was made by projects coordinator Carrie Gorsuch at the City Council Work Session on April 25. Mayor Stephen Murray congratulated Gorsuch and other staff for the work done to position the city for the grant.
“This grant is significant and goes a long way toward meeting several of the needs of this important drainage project,” Mayor Murray said later. “The Downtown and Point neighborhoods are particularly vulnerable to flooding, and the improvements will make a huge difference.”
City Manager Scott Marshall said, “I’m very proud of the talented team we have in place that helped secure this grant. Our recurring revenue streams do not support projects this big and expensive—and we have several of them on our plate. Grants like this allow us to leverage the limited funds we have without putting the entire cost of the project on the backs of our local citizens and business community.”
The grant requires that a state project manager be appointed to oversee the project. The project will include procuring engineering services including surveying, designing, obtaining permits, assessing environmental concerns, and construction oversight.
The streets in question can flood during heavy rains, especially when those coincide with high tides, thanks to drains installed in the early 1900s that simply do not have the capacity to handle heavy rains combined with high tides. The project will entail installing major stormwater trunklines that serve both areas and a number of other improvements, including green infrastructure such as permeable pavement and rain gardens, and landscaping to mitigate against flooding.
Once City Council approves a resolution to accept the grant, the City will work with the Office of Resilience on the design of the project.
Earlier this year, the City was notified that it had received an $800,000 grant to address issues along Bayard Street, also part of the larger Downtown/The Point Stormwater Drainage Project.
The $7.5 million grant from the Office of Resilience came from $100 million South Carolina was awarded through the American Rescue Plan Act.