CORRECTION: Due to a production error, an earlier version of this article incorrectly stated in the photo caption that OWASA officials cleaned up Gold Park and that the park is still closed. Hillsborough Public Works cleaned the park, and the park has been reopened. The story has been updated with the correct information. The Daily Tar Heel apologizes for this error.
Orange County was inundated with a deluge of heavy rains over the weekend, causing flooding in a number of areas throughout the county, and forced a few residents to leave properties.
In Chapel Hill, a number of roads, including Estes Drive, Umstead Drive and Cleland Drive were flooding during the storms, said Ran Northam, the community safety communications specialist for the Town of Chapel Hill.
Northam also said residential communities experienced minor flooding, as well, over the weekend. One of these communities included three buildings of Camelot Village near Bolin Creek, where four people left their residences due to the flooding. Other affected communities were Brookwood Condominiums, whose entrance was blocked by floodwaters, but no buildings were damaged.
Northam added these buildings are prone to flooding, pointing out the high volume of rain that fell in a short amount of time.
“It’s important to note just how much rain we had. In a seven day period, the Town of Chapel Hill had almost five inches of rain, which is pretty substantial,” Northam said. “We saw the highest water in Bolin Creek. It was more than an inch in an hour that fell.”
Linda Low, the communications and community relations officer for Orange Water and Sewer Authority, said it was well-prepared for the flooding but did experience a wastewater pipe break during the storm. She said this was caused by wastewater overflows from the high volume of rain that fell.
“Because of where the wastewater pipe was located, the overflow mostly ran behind the pipe down a hill where there are no residents, homes or businesses,” Low said.
Low said repairs on the pipe are ongoing, but overall the effects of the rain were not extraordinarily severe.
Nearby Hillsborough experienced more extensive effects from the rains, with numerous closures lasting for multiple days.
Press releases from the town said the Riverwalk Greenway and Gold Park were closed from April 13 to 16 due to overflow from the Eno River.
In addition, a press release from Tuesday said part of Valley Forge Road was closed due to a washout at the Cates Creek culvert, stressing that the area is dangerous and should be avoided.
“The town has hired engineers to assess soil conditions and draft plans for rebuilding the road,” the release said. “Possible solutions may include a temporary repair to allow access to the Builders FirstSource facility. This would be followed by a permanent reconstruction of the road.”
Other roads that were temporarily closed over the weekend included portions of Eno Street.
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