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Columbus could receive FEMA funds to repair failing culvert under McMurray Ave.

Published 7:25pm Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Residents along McMurray Avenue in Columbus could see major work soon as the Town of Columbus has discovered a large culvert carrying a creek under the road is failing.

Columbus Town Council met Oct. 17 and heard from town manager Jonathan Kanipe, who said town crews discovered a dip in the road several weeks ago with the culvert being compromised.

McMurray Ave. is located off Houston Rd., just past the intersection with Overlook Drive.

“We definitely have to address that and get it fixed,” Kanipe told the council.

Kanipe also said there is a sewer line that is above ground there which needs to be at least 36 inches underground.

The work will require informal bidding because costs are estimated to be above $30,000. The town is working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and state division of emergency management to help fund the street and culvert improvements since they were associated with rains in July.

The area was declared a disaster area following heavy rains, and Kanipe said Columbus is working with the agencies to ensure all the documentation is in order so the town can receive funding.

Kanipe said there are six to eight houses past the culvert with eight to 12 total homes on McMurray Avenue. Columbus plans to provide emergency road access while the work is being done because service will be out during that time.

“Before any construction begins, we will work diligently to ensure that property owners above the repair are notified and aware of the road construction. We will utilize our CodeRed Emergency service, the Tryon Daily Bulletin and go by each house personally to ensure they are aware of the road construction,” Kanipe said.

The town may need to call a special meeting to approve a construction bid since the town’s next regular meeting will not be held until Nov. 21.

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