For One North Nashville Neighborhood, The Floodwaters Are Becoming All Too Frequent | Nashville Public Radio

For One North Nashville Neighborhood, The Floodwaters Are Becoming All Too Frequent

Jul 7, 2016

Calvin Gooch surveys the damage to his house with a contractor.

Gooch heard the floodwater rising fast around 4 a.m. Thursday — all around the home near North Nashville's Ewing Creek that he shares with his wife and 4-year-old granddaughter.

Fortunately, their house was largely protected, having been raised five feet above ground level just three months ago.

"Had our house not been lifted up, this would have been the same magnitude of 2010 and 2013," Gooch says.

Flash flooding has been ripping through Middle Tennessee, trapping residents and leaving behind a trail of damage.

Gooch's neighborhood is still trying to turn the corner from previous floods.

Debris piled up in the green space along Ewing Creek.
Credit Chas Sisk / WPLN

He says he's been struggling for six years to get the financial assistance he needs to make his home safe from floods, and the work still hasn't been finished.

Gooch counts himself fortunate this time around to have lost only some books and furniture he was storing in a shed during reconstruction. Floodwater filled his ground-level garage, soaking the floorboards of his car, which appears to still be running.

Residents here say they're frustrated more hasn't been done to deal with the cycle of floods, which seem to be coming more often. Some speculate that the city's construction boom is taxing the storm water system, forcing streams like Ewing Creek out of their banks.

Ewing Creek remained high hours after Thursday's thunderstorms.
Credit Chas Sisk / WPLN

Some steps have been taken to deal with the risk of floods. At least four other homes on Ewingdale Drive have been elevated since the 2010 flood. And the side of the street closest to the creek is clear of construction.

Even residents farther from Ewing Creek say they're tired of the damage.

Mary Clark says she was awakened by the roar of the floodwater. Her home wasn't damaged, but she'd been up since wee hours talking with people who weren't so lucky.

"These are friends. These are my neighbors and my family and stuff here. I've been over here about 37 years myself, and hey, it's rough."

Clark says the city needs to come up with some sort of plan to keep this area from flooding every time there's a heavy rain.