Senn brings government entities together to fix drainage

Senn brings government entities together to fix drainage
October 31 15:21 2018 Print This Article

State Senator Sandy Senn toured flood-prone Drayton-on-the-Ashley Wednesday morning to pinpoint deficiencies in the West Ashley neighborhood’s drainage system. Accompanying her were Tim Henderson, an engineer from SCDOT, and Jim Neal, the Director of Public Works for Charleston County. Senn was recently appointed by Charleston County Legislative Delegation Chair Peter McCoy to head up a county-wide Flooding Prevention Task Force. Senn has made it a point to bring all government entities together to find solutions. She said, “You have to bring everyone to the table if you want to get anything done.”

Virginia Everman has lived in the neighborhood for 45 years but has only encountered flooding problems during the past four years. The engineers closely examined the drainage system along Harvard Avenue and came up with several solutions. Neal pledged to clean out several drain pipes and had conversations with several Drayton-on-the-Ashley residents who could grant easements and have box culverts dug, which would allow stormwater runoff to flow directly to the Ashley River.

Senn was accompanied by the neighborhood’s State Representative, Lin Bennett. She had several other West Ashley and James Island drainage hot-spots remaining on her schedule. She recently worked on a master drainage plan for James Island, which included officials from SCDOT, Charleston County, City of Charleston, the Town of James Island and the James Island Public Service District. The plan is going through an approval process with the various government entities.

Cathy Collum, a staff member on the Charleston County Legislative Delegation, has been designated as the Flooding Prevention Task Force point person on drainage issues. She can be contacted at or 843-740-5855. The task force is designed to effect drainage solutions which fit within existing governmental budgets. Projects which require significant engineering upgrades, like the $43 million Church Creek Drainage Basin plan, will need external funding sources. Charleston City Councilman Harry Griffin already got City Council to commit $500,000 in stormwater funds to build a retention pond in the Hickory Farms neighborhood.