West Ashley residents blame Bees Ferry, over-development for flooding

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Hurricane Season officially ended Thursday.

Some residents are still cleaning up from the floods brought by Hurricane Irma in September 2017.

Crosstown Church off Bees Ferry Road was devastated by the flooding. In fact, much of the church was underwater.

The church reopened its doors this past Sunday after being closed for nearly two months to repair damage caused by flood waters.

"It really is nice to be back home," said church administrative assistant Staci McLain. "Don't give up. We haven't given up and it may be frustrating but there will be a solution."

Multiple resolutions are in the air.

"We know that there's a plan we just don't know the details," McLain said."We looked at either moving out of the location or raising the floor of the building eight feet like an elevated house. One of the very first mayors of Charleston said he'd give a gold doubloon to anyone who could stop the flooding issues in Charleston, and I think we're still in that situation."

This is not the first time the church has had to close its doors.

"This location has been here for more than 15 years and never experienced flooding before," McLain said."Since the widening of Bees Ferry Road, we have flooded three times in less than two years."

Ginny Provost has lived across the marsh from the church for 20 years.

She agrees that there is a correlation between the recent flooding and the recent widening of Bees Ferry Road. She also sees a connection to over development in the area, particularly with the wetlands.

"The immediate solution is to stop approving any other development that involves filling in wetlands," Provost said. "Our entire back yard was a lake. It was completely filled with water. These were storms that brushed the coasts, not direct hits. If we had a direct hit storm, there is going to be significant flooding."

"I love our city and I love people coming. I want the development, but I don't want it to hinder those of us living here now," McLain added.

For now, nearby residents are crossing their fingers for no storms or new developments.

A flood study done of the West Ashley neighborhood is recommending storm-water pump stations and tidal surge protections.

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