Some Île Mercier residents are upset with Quebec’s rules for rebuilding flood-damaged homes, and want to rebuild at their own expense.
The government has said homes in the 0-20 year flood zone with over 50 per cent damage may have to be demolished and not rebuilt.
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“As far as I’ve heard from experts, we’ve had mold specialists in here, we’ve had general contractors in here. Everybody says the house is basically a wash. So we’d have to rebuild,” said Ro Diepen, who lives in Île Mercier with his wife and two kids.
But Diepen has an ambitious plan. He wants to tear down his entire home, and rebuild it to be more resistant to flooding.
“The water level went about three feet throughout the whole house. We would like to raise the whole house about four feet, put it on a solid cement slab foundation,” Diepen told Global News.
He thinks the rebuild would cost about $400,000, and is willing to spend his own money to do it.
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The Île Mercier resident had just renovated his kitchen prior to the floods, and was nearly done work on a tree house for he and his wife’s two sons. He doesn’t want to give up on their home.
The mayor of Île Bizard is asking Quebec to be flexible in the application of rebuilding rules.
“Even its more than 50 per cent, if he wants to make a new foundation, a new house, I think they should give them permission to do it in some cases,” Normand Marinacci told Global News.
A spokesperson for Public Security Minister Martin Coiteux said there will be exceptions to the rules.
“Particular cases will can be presented to an independent expert committee by municipalities if the damages are between 50 and 65 per cent of the house value,” said Olivier Cantin.
Ro Diepen said he will be attending a public meeting arranged by the Quebec government on July 10th, where more information will be given about the future of flood-damaged homes.
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