Announcement of Public Meeting of overview of the Draft Environmental Assessment for the proposed Stanley White Recreation Center site. The meeting will be held Thursday, July 29, 2021, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Omega Center, located at 800 Cedar St, New Bern, NC 28560. This meeting will provide an overview of the Draft Environmental Assessment and allow the public the opportunity to submit comments and ask questions.
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA): Notice of Availability of the Draft Environmental Assessment for Stanley White Recreation Center – New Bern, NC (FEMA-DR-4393-NC)
The City of New Bern has applied through the FEMA Public Assistance (PA) grant program for funding assistance, under the Presidentially Declared Disaster FEMA-DR-4393-NC, for the relocation of the Stanley White Recreation Center. In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has prepared a Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) for the proposed construction of a new recreational facility to replace the damaged Stanley White Recreation Center, outside of the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA).
According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), Hurricane Florence, a large and slow-moving Category 1 hurricane made landfall at Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina on September 14, 2018. After landfall, storm movement slowed to about 2 to 3 miles per hour, producing several days of recordbreaking rainfall across North and South Carolina. This rainfall, combined with easterly winds from Hurricane Florence, raised water levels along the western coast of the Pamlico Sound and backed up the normal flow of the Neuse River, causing significant shoreline inundation in Craven, Pamlico, and Carteret Counties. Hurricane Florence was declared a disaster on September 14, 2018 and the Public Assistance declaration included Craven County, where the City of New Bern is located.
Due to the location of the damaged Stanley White Recreation Center building within the floodplain, reconstruction of the facility on the original site would not alleviate the risk of future flooding. Therefore, FEMA proposes to fund the replacement of the original Stanley White Recreation Center with a new recreational facility at a location outside of the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA). The new facility is needed to provide a community meeting space and recreational activities in the City of New Bern by providing a permanent facility that is safe, accessible, and meets all applicable codes and standards.
Alternatives discussed in this EA include properties within the city limits of New Bern. Under the Proposed Action Alternative, the Stanley White Recreation Center would be replaced with a comparable facility at a new location: a plot of land approximately 3.4-acres between Gaston Boulevard and Broad Street. The proposed action would be approximately 62% impervious and 33% green space, with 128 parking spaces situated over 52,000 SF of the overall site. Coordinates for the center of the subject property are 35.11271 latitude, -77.05396 longitude. The proposed site is outside of the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) and meets the Codes & Standards for the City of New Bern.
The Draft EA has been prepared in accordance with all requirements of NEPA, the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), Executive Order 11988 (“Floodplain Management”), Executive Order 11990 (“Protection of Wetlands”), and the implementing regulations of FEMA, for the purpose of assessing the potential impacts of the Proposed Action on the human and natural environment. The Draft EA summarizes the purpose of and need for the project, alternatives considered, the affected environment, and potential environmental consequences of the project. It is available for review and comment and can be viewed on and/or downloaded from FEMA’s website at https://www.fema.gov/emergency- managers/practitioners/environmental-historic/region/4 . Printed copies are also available for viewing or photocopying at the following location:
Omega Center, 800 Cedar St., New Bern, NC, 28560. Monday-Friday: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday: – Sunday: Closed.
City Hall, 300 Pollock St., New Bern, NC, 28560. Monday – Friday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
New Bern – Craven County Public Library, 400 Johnson St., New Bern, NC, 28560. Wednesday 9 a.m. – 7 p.m., Thursday 9 a.m. – 7 p.m., Friday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Saturday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sunday Closed. Monday 9 a.m. – 7 p.m., Tuesday 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
A public meeting on the Draft Environmental Assessment will be held July 29, 2021 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Omega Center, located at 800 Cedar St, New Bern, NC 28560. The meeting will provide an overview of the Draft Environmental Assessment and allow an in-person opportunity to submit public comments and ask questions.
The comment period will conclude 30 days after the initial publication of this Public Notice on July 16, 2021. Written comments on the Draft EA can be mailed or emailed to the contact listed below. If no substantive comments are received, the Draft EA and associated Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) will become final. Substantive comments received will be addressed as appropriate in the Final EA/FONSI.
FEMA Region IV EHP, 3005 Chamblee-Tucker Rd., Atlanta, Georgia, 30341, Email: FEMA-R4EHP@fema.dhs.gov.
FEMA works to ensure that information is accessible for all of our customers. If you are having issues obtaining any of the graphical information presented in the appendices, please contact us by email at FEMA-R4EHP@fema.dhs.gov, so we may provide it in an accessible format.
Submitted by: Colleen Roberts, City of New Bern Information Officer