Provincial grant issued to stop North Cowichan’s Canada Avenue from flooding

WatchThe project intends to stop flooding on Canada Avenue as North Cowichan residents continue to deal with flood damage.

The flooding that shut down the busy roadway of Canada Avenue in North Cowichan earlier this month might never happen again.

The province has given the region money to help fix the problem, but that’s small comfort to those who are still dealing with the damage.

Jolie Jamison, home flooded on February 1st and she recently learned the damage won’t be covered by her insurance company.

“It was declined. It was an act of God and they don’t cover that,” she said.

While she’s out of pocket ten’s of thousands of dollars, some of it will likely be covered by a BC emergency program, but she says some of her neighbours who were also caught up in the Feb. 1 floods are worse off.

They don’t have another housing option, so they’re forced to stay in their washed-out homes.

“Because they got nowhere to go and no money,” said Jamison.

“They’re living in the mould and they’re getting sick. That worries me.”

Meanwhile, the province has announced a $750,000 grant to help prevent Canada Avenue from closing due to flooding as it did earlier this month.

“This past time it was the worst it was the worst I think I’ve seen it in 25 years,” said Justin Point, a North Cowichan resident who lives on Canada Avenue.

The high water blocked Point from being able to drive out of his property.

North Cowichan’s mayor says the provincial money will help fund the $1.5 million flooding restoration project.

“It’s fabulous that we actually got some buy-in from the province,” said Al Siebring.

“This money will allow us to complete what we started in 2009/2010 after the big floods we had. This will finally complete that project and put the final pieces in place in terms of preventing flooding on this street.”

Back on Westholme Road Jamison says it’s a struggle to pay the out of pocket expenses she hopes will be partially covered by Emergency Management BC and she’s still not sure what will happen with her home.

“We don’t know whether to rebuild, tear it down or try to buy something.”

But she’s hoping others will step forward to help her financially strapped neighbours living in their now mouldy homes.

Kendall HansonKendall Hanson

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