Scranton Makes Progress on Multiple Stormwater Projects

July 8, 2024

Spurred by recent conditional support from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Scranton officials announced updates on multiple stormwater and flood mitigation projects on Monday, July 8, 2024.

“I’m proud of our team effort as we continue to recover from the September 2023 flood, pursue funding, and mitigate future damage from extreme weather events. Obtaining federal grants and continuing to wisely invest our Rescue Plan funds will help us protect residents from the devastating impacts of extreme weather and climate change,” Mayor Paige G. Cognetti said at Scranton City Hall, 340 N. Washington Ave., Scranton. “As we approach the anniversary of last year’s flood, it’s important that our residents know we care about protecting their homes and neighborhoods.”

On July 2, FEMA announced the selection of $1 billion in funding for 656 total projects nationwide for the 2023 Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) program. BRIC grants provide investments to help communities better prepare for natural disasters.

Two of Scranton’s BRIC grant applications cleared that critical first round review last week. City officials will continue to work with project partners and engineers to ensure that funding is awarded.

The first BRIC grant, for $2,717,213, would provide funding for the acquisition and demolition of 18 properties and three vacant lots in the areas of Keyser Valley and North Scranton that sustained substantial damage during flash flooding on September 9, 2023. This marks significant progress compared to previous attempted projects, as the City’s 2021 request that FEMA buy out flood-prone homes on Merrifield Avenue was denied.

The 18 properties identified for acquisition and demolition include:

  • One property on Jackson Street;
  • Six properties on Leggett Street; 
  • Two properties on Mary Street; and 
  • Nine properties on North Merrifield Avenue.

A second BRIC grant for $75,001 would allow the City to hire a consultant to update building codes related to flooding and other hazardous events and to train staff members on those updates.

“Investing in preparedness and resilience today can help keep our country safe tomorrow,” United States Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas said in announcing the BRIC grants last week. “Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities program grants are a lifeline for communities across the country, funding projects big and small — from major flood mitigation projects to shaded bus shelters. The impact of these projects will ultimately be measured in lives saved and disasters averted.”

Meanwhile, the City continues to process applications and reach out to residents that applied for Scranton’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Individual Disaster Recovery grant. As of July 5, 106 residents had applied, with 81 applicants, or 84%, receiving awards totaling $344,978.48. Seventeen residents remain eligible for the program but require additional documents. Five applications were ineligible, and three residents voluntarily withdrew applications.

Stormwater mitigation projects funded either wholly or partially through Scranton’s ARPA funds also continue. A combined total of $22,366,442 is funding projects in the East Mountain, Keyser Valley, Minooka, North Scranton, Tripp Park, and West Scranton. Nearly 33 percent of the City’s $68.7 million in ARPA funds is dedicated to stormwater management and related infrastructure projects.

A public meeting on the Keyser Valley project is expected to take place this month, with a separate meeting about the Minooka, North Scranton, Tripp Park, and West Scranton projects to follow.

Finally, the City is due to complete its 2018 FEMA projects caused by flooding from August 10 to 15, 2018. Completion of those projects is due by October 1, 2024.

ABOUT THE CITY OF SCRANTON: Incorporated in 1866, the City of Scranton has a population of approximately 76,000 residents and is the sixth-largest municipality in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Scranton City Hall is located at 340 N. Washington Ave., Scranton, PA 18503. Residents requiring services should visit

ABOUT THE AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN ACT (ARPA) OF 2021: ARPA is a $1.9 trillion federal economic stimulus bill. The City of Scranton received $68.7 million in ARPA funds to respond to the COVID-19 public health emergency and its economic impacts. Scranton’s ARPA program mission is to give people access to resources, rebuild the infrastructure systems that impact their everyday lives, and foster equitable wealth generation that targets the needs of Scranton residents.

Scranton Makes Progress on Multiple Stormwater Projects | Press Release

Last modified: July 8, 2024

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