Pinellas County residents are concerned about flooding

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Many businesses and restaurants in Tarpon Springs plan to open for the first half of Tuesday as final preparations take place ahead of Idalia.

However, many entrepreneurs are concerned about the storm surge and possible flooding.

Flooding has been a long-term problem in Tarpon Springs and the city government is working on a long-term solution. In July, the City Board of Commissioners awarded a construction contract to raise the intersection to reduce flooding on South Spring Boulevard and West Martin Luther King Jr. Drive near Whitcomb Bayou.

The contractor is currently working on material permits and orders. Construction is expected to begin later this year to avoid the peak of the hurricane season as this key hub is required to be closed for two to three months.

Meanwhile, several business owners are finding their own ways to prepare for the storm.

“Streets are naturally flooded by tides and rain,” said Patti Bryant, owner of Wine at the Docks. “I’m keeping my fingers crossed that we don’t have that flood, but if we do, we could be very vulnerable to a lot of water.”

Across the street at The Lighthouse Shoppes, Stratos Rigas takes on the familiar task of storm preparation. Rigas has witnessed the strongest storms in Pinellas County over the decades.

“We live on the water,” Rigas said. “So I saw it literally go from the edge where the dock was to the back yard within 15 to 20 minutes. It was like a wave came in and pushed the water inland.”

The town of Tarpon Springs has three sandbag locations.

  • Historic Sponge Docks
  • Tarpon Springs Splash Park
  • Dorset Park

Watch WFLA Now’s 24/7 coverage to stay up to date on Idalia. Check our Tracking the Tropics page for closures and weather conditions in your area.

Laura Coffey

Laura Coffey is a Worldtimetodays U.S. News Reporter based in Canada. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Laura Coffey joined Worldtimetodays in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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