More than $30.3 million in federal aid has flowed into Berkshire County since Tropical Storm Irene blew through the region last August.
The storm slammed into the Northeast six months ago this week, leaving badly damaged homes and roads in its wake. A few days after the waters receded, President Barack Obama declared the county a disaster area, freeing up the federal relief funds.
Since then, almost 750 county residents have applied for and received $4.3 million worth of individual aid to help cover the cost of repairing damaged homes and temporary housing.
Another $3 million in funds have been or will be distributed to municipalities across the county to pay to repair damaged roads, bridges and culverts.
The vast majority of the money -- $23 million -- went toward fixing a winding stretch of the Route 2, Mohawk Trail, which connects North Adams to Florida, Savoy and Charlemont.
A six-mile section of the trail was impassible after the storm. Massive landslides along the steep banks that line the road have since been shored up with new retaining walls.
Remarkably, the road reopened just three months after it closed. Residents on both sides of the closure said the quick work was a relief. The route, they say, was an important connector for leaf peeping tourists.
"It's not a very big road, but a lot of people needed to pass through," said Jill Chattin, an attendant at Planet Gas in Charlemont. "It
Likewise, North Adams Mayor Richard Alcombright said businesses in the city definitely felt the impact of the road's closure. Alcombright praised state transportation officials for their quick work.
"When they said they were going to have that road ready in December, we were all just rolling our eyes," he said. "But God bless them; they did what they said."