Flood Project Underway In Martin

By: Angela Sparkman Reports
By: Angela Sparkman Reports

After years of bad floods, one Eastern Kentucky town is moving and we're not talking about starting a new town. Every building in the Floyd County town of Martin is going to move.

Long time Martin city residents say Main Street was once the place to be, but now, years of floods have almost washed the city away, and what's left has to move.

"They're going to crumble eventually because it's flood after flood after flood here," said Martin Mayor Thomasine Robinson.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is moving the entire city to higher land. Some have already packed up and left town.

"Most of the people had to move because they couldn't make a decent living there in their businesses because of the project," said business owner Peter Grigsby.

But not everyone is gone.

"We're still in business and we're still open," Grigsby said.

They say the problem is they don't have enough customers to survive.

"We were doing decent business. This project comes along and it's damaged our business, damaged our buildings, and we're not getting any positive answers," Grigsby said.

"Our city was already dead before this project started due to the floods we've had in the past," said Mayor Robinson.

City leaders say the city has to move or it would disappear.

Business owners say they're not against the project, but they hope they get more customers so they can survive to move to the new city.

"We still hope to stay in business until this project is completed," Grigsby said.

"Martin was once a booming city and it's the center of the county and it is again going to be a booming city," said Mayor Robinson.

Business owners just hope they make it until then.

City leaders hope to start building the new city hall, the post office, and the school within the next two years. It may take ten years before the entire city has moved.


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