When a Durham city sewer main flooded the offices of the Eno River Association with untreated sewage in January, the group found itself with a huge mess to clean up and repair costs of over $100,000.
“It caused a complete upheaval. We were forced to relocate, and dealing with the damage has been time-consuming and expensive.” says the group’s Executive Director Robin Jacobs. “It helps that we’re such a resourceful organization. But we’re ready to put this chapter behind us and move on.” The group needs to raise just $X more to complete renovations and return to their building on Guess Road.
Despite the incident, the conservation group has continued saving land in Durham and Orange counties. “We’re in the middle of a project that will add 88 acres to Eno River State Park and have several others in the works upstream of Hillsborough,” says Jacobs. The group’s Sunday afternoon hikes and outdoor workdays are ongoing, and registration for iWalk the Eno, a science and nature summer camp for third, fourth, and fifth graders, is underway. “We’ve also just applied to renew our national accreditation,” adds Jacobs. “The public comment period for that is now open.”
By ordinance, the City of Durham will only cover up to $15,000 in sewer damages. In February, the group asked council members to foot more of the repair bill “Donors were telling us that they thought this should be on the city’s shoulders,” continues Jacobs. The city responded with an additional $25,000 grant to the organization. The Triangle Community Foundation, the Conservation Trust for North Carolina, the Cannon Foundation, and several individuals have also made major gifts. “The support we have received from the community has been extraordinary,” Jacobs added. “Now we need just a little more help to get us to the finish line.”
Frequently Asked Questions regarding the City of Durham Sewage spill at our Guess Rd offices, the clean up, and rebuilding efforts to date. Check back for updates.