MUDDY WATER’S TAKEN ALL: The Great Flood of 1916, the result of more than a week of rain and two hurricanes, ravaged Western North Carolina and its inhabitants, destroying infrastructure, stripping farmland of its topsoil and driving the sides of mountains down into the valleys. With the centennial anniversary of the flood approaching, filmmaker David Weintraub looks back on the devastation, the fortitude of WNC’s communities and why we must heed the lessons learned back then. Photo of South Depot St., Asheville, by William H. Barnhill; via Pack Memorial Library Special Collections

Rememberin­g the Great Flood of 1916

With the Great Flood’s centennial approaching, filmmaker David Weintraub has produced a documentary, Come Hell or High Water, exploring the catastrophe through descendants’ memories, historical photos and contemporary accounts. Xpress sat down with Weintraub to talk about the film, the flood’s impact on the region and the lessons to be learned.

RIVER RUNS THROUGH: Looking south, a calm French Broad flows well within its banks, with New Belgium Brewery under construction on the right. Drone photography by Dan Caylor

Costs and benefits: What’s the price of riverfront revitaliza­tion?

In her landmark 1955 book, The French Broad, Asheville author Wilma Dykeman said the river was “above all, a region of life, with all the richness and paradox of life.” She described a watershed rich in flora and fauna, ranging from the “fertile fields and gentle fall” through Transylvania and Henderson counties to the sudden “plunge between steep mountains” around Asheville, “strewn with jagged boulders.”

BIG RIVER: Flooding concerns have played a pivotal part in the recent debate over redevelopment plans for the River Arts District. Photo by Xpress.

If the creek don’t rise: Flooding, money and politics in the River Arts District

City plans to improve infrastructure, expand public space, increase access and encourage private development in the River Arts District have triggered considerable controversy. Xpress reached out to the city, RAD business and property owners, and organizations involved in the now flourishing area’s revitalization to try to answer some key questions.

Isaac takes the coast by storm (at night!)

This amazing image of Tropical Storm Isaac was captured just after midnight on Tuesday, Aug. 28, by the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on the Suomi-NPP satellite. Still off the Gulf Coast, Isaac’s clouds were lit by moonlight and the lights of cities across the Southeast U.S. are clearly visible. I’ve added labels for some of the more visible metropolitan areas, including Asheville.