Of all the towns on the northern Outer Banks, Kitty Hawk has probably had the most problems with flooding. In a first effort to fix that, the south portion of the beach road was closed today as a drain and outflow system was installed in that area.
It’s part of a mitigation effort that includes beach nourishment.
The area between the Bypass and Beach Road is for the most part pretty close to sea level, and that is especially true in Kitty Hawk. Both Kill Devil Hills and Nags Head have had pumping and outflow systems in place for a number of years and the difference that makes whenever the ocean breaches the dune line is apparent and undeniable.
The reasons a pumping system was never established in Kitty Hawk are so numerous with so many different roads traveled that it might take a book to explore all of them. However, there had been increasing support for moving forward with an outflow system, although there was still some hesitation.
ThenHurricane Sandy came calling and after two weeks and more, in some cases, of flooded homes and businesses, the Kitty Hawk Town Council took a hard look at an outflow system as part of an overall mitigation effort.
The town is continuing to move ahead with an interlocal beach nourishment agreement with Dare County and the towns of Duck, Kill Devil Hills and Nags Head. Southern Shores, with the most stable beaches on the Outer Banks has declined to join the agreement, although the town council has held a number of discussions on the subject.