Aug 15, 2013 8:28 PM by John Patrick
RIO RICO, Ariz. - A new detention basin in Rio Rico will keep one neighborhood safe and save the families money in the process.
Residents in the Gorrion Corte area of Rio Rico's west side like Oscar Bojorquez have built brick walls around their property to help keep flooding from reaching their front door.
"Every year I see that house flooding in about two feet of water," says Bojorquez pointing down the street.
That flooding has forced people like Beth Lamb Garcia to face the ever rising cost of flood insurance. Her home, along with 94 others in the area, sits in an active floodplain.
Garcia explains, "We had to pay our own flood insurance and that was more than $300 a year. So that was a big expense."
A big expense that will soon go back into many resident's pockets courtesy of a project started last week by Santa Cruz County.
John Hays, Santa Cruz County Floodplain Coordinator, says the construction of a new retention-detention basin will not only keep the west side of Rio Rico better protected from flooding but the nearly one hundred homes will no longer be classified as part of a floodplain by the federal government.
"This project is going to take the homes back out and can save these people anywhere from $800 to $1600 a year in flood insurance," says Hays.
Construction on the basin is expected to complete by early November, however, the paperwork and remapping of the floodplain may take another six to nine months.