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Floodplain Acquisition

Floodplain acquisition is the purchase of floodplain properties and conversion of these properties to passive land uses not damaged by flooding. Uses such as recreation and open space are consistent with overall efforts in stream corridor restoration. Because of the multiple objectives for stream corridors, including tourism and recreational business, there are various sources of money that may be available for floodplain acquisition. These include money for parklands and open space, as well as money from the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP).

Damages caused by flooding have spurred efforts for voluntary floodplain acquisition in parts of the Delaware River Basin. These efforts are only effective when floodplain residents are willing to relocate. In the Delaware River Basin, there is no one entity that coordinates floodplain acquisition programs or funding opportunities. This activity would require legal, financial, and business expertise. There are some examples of successful acquisition programs throughout the country that have been documented by the Association of State Flood Plain Managers. Such programs, while initially expensive, drastically reduce future flood damage without the risks and maintenance expense of structural flood control.