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National Disaster Resilience Competition

Phase I: The Framing Stage

The best applications demonstrated how the concept (1) helps the community recover from the effects of the covered disaster, (2) advances community development objectives such as economic revitalization, and (3) improves the community’s ability to absorb or rapidly recover from the effects of future extreme events, stresses, threats, hazards, or other shocks.

The two-phased NDRC competition is structured iteratively to guide each applicant through broad consideration of its disaster recovery needs, vulnerabilities, stakeholder interests, resilience and other community development objectives, and investment alternatives in Phase I.

Phase II calls for the reconsideration of those issues at a more granular level of detail. Phase II is considered to be the framing phase and lasted approximately 180 days from the announcement of the NDRC.

Commonwealth of Virginia's Phase I Concept Proposal

Concept Qualifying

The competition encouraged communities to not only consider how they can recover from a past disaster but also how to avoid future disaster losses. Applicants had to link or “tie-back” their proposals to the disaster from which they are recovering, as well as demonstrate how they are reducing future risks and advancing broader community development goals within in their target geographic area(s). For example, a community that lost housing during a mudslide may consider constructing homes in a safer area for the survivors. It may also find a financing mechanism for affected downstream businesses to survive the effects of the event and prepare and plan for future hazards.

The Commonwealth of Virginia's proposal presented projects from the cities of Norfolk and Chesapeake for funding consideration and moved forward to the second phase. Hurricane Irene was the qualifiying event for both cities.

CITY OF NORFOLK

The target area was identified as most impacted and distressed by census tracts. As a result of Hurricane Irene, 345 homes in target area sustained damage – 187 dwellings affected, 2 residential dwellings destroyed, 28 residential dwellings sustained major damage, and 128 residential dwellings sustained minor damage, as recorded by the city’s damage assessment team during windshield survey in the aftermath. More than 50% of people in the target area earn less than 80% of the area median income. The population of the target area is 206,675. Of that 112,415 individuals, or 54.39%, are low- and moderate-income. The city of Norfolk has Unmet Recovery Needs, meaning needs that have not been addressed by Federal, state, or other sources, in the target area identified.

  • Of 345 homes that sustained damage from Hurricane Irene, 196 lie within thge FEMA designated floodplain.

  • Windshield survey conducted on 93 of these houses in March 2015 demonstrates that these houses have remaining damage as repairs to these homes did not incorporate resilient measures, such as house elevation, to mitigate similar future damage.

  • Effective January 1, 2014, Norfolk changed requirements for new construction for structures located in the floodplain to be built with freeboard at three (3) feet above the 100 year flood estimated flooding levels.  Additionally, in the 0.2% annual chance flood zone, all new construction shall have the lowest floor, including basement, elevated or flood-proofed to one and one-half (1.5) feet above the highest grade immediately adjacent to the structure.

  • Because total repair costs can include the reasonable extra cost to buyout homes or repair homes resiliently, e.g., extra cost to elevate or build a safe room. Based on their location in the FEMA defined floodplain and the city’s commitment to ensuring that structures are elevated, resilient repair would include house elevation.  Therefore, unmet needs include the cost of elevating 93 houses at an average cost of $150,000 per house.

  • As noted above, the Unmet Need is the documented instances of homes to be elevated out of the repetitive flooding zones. The city has worked with residents on an individual basis where possible to undertake this action; however, there are insufficient resources to complete this much needed activity.

CITY OF CHESAPEAKE

The target area was identified as most impacted and distressed by census tracts in Chesapeake, Virginia. As a result of Hurricane Irene in 2011, 335 residential properties sustained damage. 166 of these damaged houses are concentrated in the target area – 82 residential dwellings affected, 21 residential dwellings sustained major damage, and 63 residential dwellings sustained minor damage as recorded by the City’s damage assessment team during windshield survey after Hurricane Irene. More than 50% of people in the target area earn less than 80% of the area median income. The population of the target area is 50,025. Of that 25,940 individuals, or 51.85%, are low- and moderate-income (LMI). The City of Chesapeake has Unmet Recovery Needs, meaning needs that have not been addressed by Federal, state, or other sources, in the area(s) identified.

  • 59 houses with remaining damage – in need of resilient repair

  • Windshield survey conducted in January 2015 demonstrates that 59 homes in the target area have remaining damage from the Qualified Disaster as repairs to these homes did not incorporate resilient measures, such as house elevation, to mitigate similar future damage.

  • All of these houses lie within FEMA designated floodplain. Ten (10) surveyed residents confirmed that (i.) the damage was due to the disaster and (ii.) they had inadequate resources from insurance/FEMA/SBA for completing their repairs (see 10ResSurveysChes.pdf).

  • Twenty-five (25) of the 59 houses have had multiple flood insurance claims according to historic flood claims data.

  • Effective July, 2013, Chesapeake changed requirements for new construction for structures located in the floodplain to be built with freeboard at one and half (1.5) feet above the 100 year flood estimated flooding levels.

  • Because  total repair costs can include the reasonable extra cost to buyout homes or repair homes resiliently, e.g., extra cost to elevate or build a safe room. Based on their location in the FEMA defined floodplain and the city’s commitment to ensuring that structures are elevated, resilient repair would include house elevation. Therefore, unmet needs include the cost of elevating 59 houses at an average cost of $150,000 per house.

National Objective. The Hampton Roads target areas in the Cities of Chesapeake and Norfolk, Virginia described above represent households with up to 80% of the area’s median income, and thus the target areas qualify as meeting the low- and moderate-income person benefit national objective.

Overall Benefit. The Commonwealth of Virginia will ensure that at least 50% of the funds requested for programs and activities developed in the Phase II application will benefit low- and moderate-income persons in the form of services, area benefit, housing, and/or jobs.

Tie-back. Virginia’s Phase II application for CDBG-NDR grant funding will document how its proposed programs and activities respond to its Qualifying Disaster, Hurricane Irene (2011).

To learn more abouth the Commonwealth of Virginia's Phase I application click the links above or go to the Virginia Resiliency Plan webpage (http://www.dhcd.virginia.gov/index.php/virginias-resiliency-plan.html).