Franklin is spending more than $165,000 to study drainage in the city in an effort to prevent future flooding around creeks and ditches.
City board of works members hired an engineer to do two studies for the city, including reviewing some suggestions and requests made by a group of downtown business owners.
Both projects will be paid for with stormwater funds, which come from a $5-per-month fee charged to city property owners.
Once the city has the overall stormwater plan, Franklin could be eligible for up to $1 million in grant funds from the state, city engineer Travis Underhill said. Grants for stormwater projects are rare, but money might be available near the end of the year, he said.
The smaller project will cost $18,740 and will focus on Youngs Creek near the downtown and what projects the city could do to improve water flow around bridges and upgrade drains that empty in the creek. That study should be complete in about two months, said Andrew Cochrane of Whitaker Engineering.
Scott Graham of Graham’s Auto Wrecker and other business owners have told the city that water levels in the creek are higher and rise faster since the 2008 flood. In December, about 6 inches of water flooded Graham’s business and was standing in the low-lying areas downtown.
The second project will cost $147,600 and will analyze water flow from all creeks, ditches and drains in the city. That study, which would be completed toward the end of the year, will allow Franklin to identify problem areas in the city drainage system and plan projects to lessen flooding in the future.