First building is being constructed on redevelopment site

By: Angela Sparkman Email
By: Angela Sparkman Email

The first building to be put on the City of Martin redevelopment site in Floyd County is now under construction.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers project to move the city out of the flood plain started nearly a decade ago.

Monday morning, Congressman Hal Rogers and city and county leaders broke ground on the new fire department, the first public building for the site.

"This new city of Martin is about to be re-born," said Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Kentucky 5th District).

Six floods in the past three decades wiped out the City of Martin.

"Their homes have been washed away. Their family Bibles destroyed; churches ruined; businesses flooded. They've suffered so much," said Rep. Rogers.

The first step towards moving the entire city to higher ground, out of the flood plain, is underway.

Leaders held a groundbreaking ceremony for the fire department building.

"I just think it's a glorious day here, and I'm just so proud and honored to know we're getting a new fire department here. We desperately need it," said Mayor Thomasine Robinson.

Firefighters say the new station will also make them more accessible to the community.

"Where we're at now, it's kind of hard to get in and out, here would make a big difference," said Assistant Chief Jim Rudder.

The new fire station should be finished within a year.

Then crews will start moving City Hall and the Post Office.

"I think everyone is anxious to see Martin grow because Martin is the center of the county. We will definitely grow now," said Mayor Robinson.

"This is a unique project. I don't know of anything like this in the country where we're relocating an entire town," said Rep. Rogers.

A new town they say will not flood anymore.

Congressman Rogers said the budget has money for this building and the rest depends on the annual appropriations.

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