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Inwood getting flood relief

May 26, 1999|By DAVE McMILLION, Charles Town

INWOOD, W.Va. - In a project that is expected to cost more than $1 million, officials propose building three waterways in the Inwood area to relieve flooding in the community.

During heavy rains, water often backs up around the intersection of U.S. 11 and W.Va. 51 and in nearby areas.

Not only does it create a traffic problem, but the flooding poses a contamination risk to groundwater, said Donald Dirting of the Eastern Panhandle Soil Conservation District.

The high water flows through septic drain fields and into groundwater supplies, Dirting said.

"This is a very important issue for us," he said.

The three waterways will drain water from the Inwood area and carry it to the Opequon Creek, Dirting said.

The first waterway, a narrow, open grassy area, will start north of the Inwood Assembly of God and extend east to the Inwood East subdivision, according to Dirting.

Another waterway, consisting of mostly underground drains, will extend from the Knouse Foods Cooperative to the South Berkeley Volunteer Fire Department.

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A third section will run near the new Musselman High School along U.S. 11 south of Inwood. The sections will connect near the high school and take the water to the Opequon, according to Dirting.

The project is expected to relieve flooding on about 2,300 acres in the area, he said.

The governor's office has awarded $100,000 for the design of the system, Dirting said.

State and federal grants are expected to pay for construction costs, which will top $1 million, said Dirting.

It is uncertain when construction will begin, he said.

The flooding is caused by rapid growth that outpaced storm water systems in the area, said Sen. John Under, D-Berkeley, who worked with other lawmakers to get funding for the project.

Similar problems exist in Berkeley Station and Bedington, Unger said.

Dirting said Inwood sits in the "bottom of a bowl," which makes it difficult to drain water from the area.

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