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Valmeyer Acquisitions Buyouts Create Open Space

VALMEYER, IL - Prior to 1993, the Village of Valmeyer was a small farming community in southwestern Illinois. The Village is located 5 miles east of the Mississippi River, just south of St. Louis, Missouri. The Village is protected by levees and, consequently, has rare but extreme flood events. In the Great Flood of 1993, the Village experienced record flooding. The 1993 flood inundated almost the entire Village for months. It caused substantial damage to over 200 homes.

Rather than rebuild in the wide Mississippi River floodplain, the Village of Valmeyer utilized funds from the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP), Illinois Department of Commerce and Community Affairs and the Economic Development Administration to mitigate the flood damages. The Village implemented an acquisition project to acquire 242 properties, many of them substantially damaged. An additional 92 structures were acquired using National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Section 1362 funding (no longer available). To completely mitigate the threat of flooding, the entire Village relocated three miles away to a bluff overlooking the site of the former Village.

The acquisition project moved quickly, and within 2 years nearly the entire floodravaged Village had been acquired and demolished. The site of Old Valmeyer has been dedicated to open space and will be used for recreation and farming purposes. The Village has successfully relocated above the floodplain, and most original town residents now live in the "New Valmeyer." The new Village includes residential areas, a commercial and industrial district, school buildings, churches, and public offices. Located within commuting distance of St. Louis, New Valmeyer is a prosperous community experiencing rapid growth.

Last updated June 3, 2020