Warren Krout estimates he has lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in inventory and office equipment at his pawn shop during the repeated flooding that plagued the Ohio city over the years.
He’s finally had enough.
Krout sold his business, which sits less than a block from the Blanchard River near downtown, to Hancock County earlier this month. The county plans to tear down the building and turn the site into green space to help with flood control, The Courier reported.
“I’m sad to see it happen,” Krout said. “But in the big picture, and hopefully I’ll be here long enough to see the big picture when they get some of this done, it’s a good thing.”
Addressing flooding along the river is a top concern in Findlay where five major floods have caused millions of dollars in damage since 2007.
Flooding is a constant worry for many in the city’s low-lying areas. Government funds have been used already to buy flood-prone property and homes along the river. Several houses and businesses that repeatedly have been inundated with floodwater already have been demolished.
Officials also are looking at other solutions to reduce flooding.
The state gave Hancock and Putnam counties nearly $1 million this past week for flood control efforts. Most will go toward a flood control plan being developed by the Army Corps of Engineers.
A final report is expected to be finished by the spring of 2016 and submitted to Congress.
The Corps and Hancock County are expected to split to the total cost of the study, expected to be about $9 million. Estimates for the actual flood-control projects are much larger and have ranged as high as $200 million in the county.
Krout, meanwhile, plans to reopen his pawn shop on higher ground next spring. He had been in the same downtown spot for more than 30 years.
“My attitude on this: It’s just opening a new chapter in my life,” he said.
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