Heritage homeowner in Calgary to refuse flood buyout
Roxboro resident Monique Beaumont says the province's plan does not make sense for her street
The province has offered to buy out residents in designated floodways for the full amount on their last property tax assessment, but one Calgary resident says it's not the right plan for her 100-year-old home in Roxboro.
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"My home is one of the oldest in the neighbourhood. It's — I believe — a 1912 mission-style two-storey lovely home," said Monique Beaumont.
Her basement flooded along with most of the houses on her street, but she says it's still in fine condition.
"Structurally, the house is perfect. From the outside you can't tell anything happened to it."
Beaumont says the province's plan does not make sense for her street.
"I'm not at all in favour of it. I recognize and appreciate the work the province has been doing. I know each case is quite individual, but I feel as if they're making policies to protect people in different situation than say our stretch of road," she said.
"They would like us to move out of the floodway and it seems to me not a great policy since most of us, just in our specific area, don't intend to do that."
Historic properties disappearing
Beaumont feels the plan accomplishes nothing.
"It's a one time offer. Most of us aren't going to take it, but what it will do is leave up to three or four empty lots on a stretch of very old, historic properties."
Properties which she feels are already disappearing in Calgary.
"My neighbourhood has been particularly hard hit by Calgary's growing sort-of modernization," says Beaumont. "We are already under siege. There are not a lot of original houses left."
Beaumont says the idea that the area could be redeveloped into green space or berming for the next flood would not work.
"The river snakes around through there so the water comes in from everywhere," she said, adding the current flood zone maps used by the province are not accurate.
Beaumont says there were houses in the interior of the neighbourhood, far away from the river, that had four feet on the main floor and they are not considered in the floodway.
"There are still some very old houses there that have seen a lot of changing riverway and they're fine, so the province stepping in to buy people out, in our case — for the most part, that was not appealing to us."