The Watershed Protection Department is buying out flood-prone homes within the Onion Creek Forest, Onion Creek Plantation, Silverstone and Yarrabee Bend neighborhoods.
We have partnered with the Corps of Engineers since 1999 to find solutions to flooding. Our joint study recommended buying out 483 homes in the 25-year floodplain, restoring the riparian areas along Onion Creek and converting the area to a park.
The homes in the project area were selected due to their high risk of flooding. These neighborhoods experienced serious flooding in 1998, 2001 and 2013. At the time of the Halloween Flood, we had already purchased 323 homes.
On June 26, 2014, the Austin City Council approved $35.5 million in Certificates of Obligation to expand the buyout program beyond the Corps project area for approximately 140 homes in the 25-year floodplain.
Corps Project Funding
The U.S. Congress authorized the project in 2007, but federal funding was not approved until March 2014. The Project Partnership Agreement was approved by Austin City Council on August 28, 2014, and it will allow the City to receive between $8 and $10 million in Fiscal Year 2014 for buyouts.
Recovery Buyout Program: We have closed on 96 properties since the Halloween Flood (as of Aug. 29, 2014).
Remaining Corps of Engineers Buyouts: 64 properties remain in the project area. The recent federal funding may not be enough to buy all the properties this coming year. Property owners will be contacted directly by us as funding becomes available in the fall of 2014.
Certifcates of Obligation, approved by Austin City Council in June 2014: Includes the buyout of approximately 140 homes in the 25-year floodplain, but outside the Corps project area. These buyouts are in progress.
Outside the Project Area: Approximately 230 structures in the area of William Cannon and Pleasant Valley Roads remain at risk of flooding in a 100-year storm outside of these buyout areas. We are diligently pursuing funding to buy out these houses. Call 512-974-2843.