D.C.

Plan proposed to stop residential flooding in Bloomingdale neighborhood

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The McMillian filter plant, a historic site, could be the solution residents on this flood prone area have been waiting for.

Bloomingdale flood. Photo: Sam Ford/WJLA

A 110-year-old facility, once used to make the city's water clean, now appears to have a new mission. That’s music to the ears of residents like Russ Kenner.

"It's the season of hope,” says Russ Kenner. “Nice Christmas present"

After decades of problems with severe flooding, it was this past year with four floods in four months that has prompted city officials to finally find a viable solution.

Already a low lying area, the Bloomindale neighborhood is also where three major storm drains converge. This past summer, residents and shop owners lost thousands of dollars in damage.

The expensive plan is to convert the McMillian filtration plant near Washington Hospital Center to store up to six million gallons of runoff in existing underground basins. And eventually by 2016, a six block, underground tunnel will store even more tanks for storm water and sewage back up.

In the meantime, the D.C. Council is considering creating a $1 million fund to reimburse residents, which could result in a 30 cent monthly surcharge on water bills throughout the city.

It come with a hefty price tag of $145 million, $40 million more than the original plan which would take 13 years. Tanks should be up here at McMillian in less than two.

Bloomingdale straddles Rhode Island Avenue in Northwest.

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