Loading articles...

High River residents frustrated, demand chance to relocate

High River residents say they’re frustrated, and some don’t want to wait the months it may take to rebuild their town.

Those who live in the neighbourhoods of Sunrise and Hampton Hills have told their local MLA they deserve the chance to move.

The problem is they don’t qualify under the same provincial rules as others because they don’t live on the flood plain.

In a release, Danielle Smith says she’s been told 133 homeowners want to be bought out of their properties in those two communities alone.

“Earlier this month in an interview about the province’s disaster relief program, Premier Alison Redford said ‘everyone’s circumstances will be unique.’ Well, these communities are unique cases that demand unique solutions,” she says.

Smith has compiled a list of twelve detailed concerns in a letter to the Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths.

In it, she talks about how these two neighbourhoods were never supposed to flood, how decisions from authorities actually made their ordeal worse and that the two areas were under water longer than anywhere else.

Smith says volunteers were also prevented from coming in to help.

Matthew works at a nearby gas station; he says the area has become a virtual ghost town.

“Most of the familiar faces look like they’ve just packed their bags and left,” he tells 660News. “It seems like only the people who got away scot-free are still sticking around.”

Right now he says many owners are still trying to strip their homes of waterlogged and mouldy items.

Smith is holding another town hall meeting Tuesday night for those who live in the Beachwood and Wallaceville neighbourhoods.

Tuesday afternoon, Rick Fraser, the Associate Minister for Regional Recovery and Reconstruction, will show the first few units ready for occupancy in High River’s new temporary neighbourhood, named Saddlebrook.