Florida receives $120 million WIFIA loan to improve stormwater infrastructure, mitigate flooding

(UI) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a $120 million Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) loan to the City of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. This funding will improve stormwater management and bolster climate resilience in the city’s most flood-prone neighborhoods.

“With this investment, Fort Lauderdale will strengthen its climate resilience, develop innovative green infrastructure projects and upgrade traditional stormwater systems to reduce flood risk for local residents and businesses,” said EPA Assistant Administrator for Water Radhika Fox.

The City of Fort Lauderdale’s Neighborhood Stormwater Improvements Project will enhance climate resilience, upgrade stormwater infrastructure, and reduce water pollution. The City of Fort Lauderdale is at elevated risk of climate impacts, including sea-level rise, elevated groundwater, and more frequent and severe rain events. This WIFIA loan supports implementation of green and gray infrastructure to help manage stormwater in impacted neighborhoods, including many with environmental justice concerns. Additionally, the city will improve water quality in intercoastal waterways by replacing aging, corroding pipelines that leach heavy metals and contaminants.

“Neighborhoods that are hardest hit by storms, including River Oaks, Dorsey-Riverbend, Durrs, Progresso Village, Victoria Park, Melrose Manors, and Southeast Isles will greatly benefit from the stormwater improvements these funds will finance,” said Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis.

The City of Fort Lauderdale will save approximately $26 million by financing with a WIFIA loan. Investing in local water infrastructure will create approximately 200 jobs.

Established by the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act of 2014, the WIFIA program is a federal loan program administered by EPA. The WIFIA program’s aim is to accelerate investment in the nation’s water infrastructure by providing long-term, low-cost supplemental credit assistance for regionally and nationally significant projects. The WIFIA program has an active pipeline of pending applications for projects that will result in billions of dollars in water infrastructure investment and thousands of jobs.


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