Philadelphia to receive $25M in federal aid to address flood concerns

Philadelphia is set to receive millions in federal money to address flood concerns nearly a year after the remnants of Hurricane Ida made the Vine Street Expressway into a river. 

Interstate 676, known locally as the Vine Street Expressway, quickly filled with water when the Schuylkill River overflowed into the city last September. Videos of people kayaking and tubing down the transient waterway quickly filled social media; one man was even spotted backflipping off an overpass into the water. 

"I looked out and I couldn’t see the street signs, that’s how high the water was," Barbara Krassenstein recalled. "The parking lot was flooded, the whole lobby was flooded." 

Center City and other parts of the city were likewise inundated with water that flooded basements and local businesses. Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Adam Theil called the 16-foot-high floodwaters "truly unprecedented" during an interview with Good Day Philadelphia. 

Nearly a year after the historic flooding, Philadelphia is getting $25M in federal aid to help prevent another devastating flood from happening again. The White House says measures will include green infrastructure, sewer and highway projects, stormwater planters and curb extensions. 

The funding is part of a larger $1B climate crisis package by the Biden Administration to help states manage the increasing impact of severe weather events. 

The federal money comes amid deadly flooding in Kentucky that has claimed at least 30 lives and damaged hundreds of homes and vehicles.