NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- The City of Norfolk is actively trying to combat the impacts of rising sea levels. A large federal grant and the work of two universities -- including Old Dominion University -- should help.

The nearly $300,000 grant from the federal government will help researchers from ODU and the University of Virginia evaluate areas before and after reoccurring flooding. They plan to use city cameras to do it.

"We are gonna leverage that video and assess the situation under flooded conditions, understand the extent of flooding as well as the depth of floodwater on roadway surfaces," said Mecit Cetin, director of the transportation institute at ODU.

Cetin said once that video is gathered, researchers will run the images through algorithms.They also want to incorporate images gathered from social media. The goal is to have all the information transmitted to the public, allowing people to know -- in real time -- when roads are flooding.

"It will be something like an app in your cell phone, and then you should be able to get these quick updates or some sort of flash messaging," said Khan Iftekharuddin, associate dean for research.

The information should have a significant impact on first responders whose work gets especially difficult during floods.

"Once we build this program, we are hoping that other municipalities in the regions will also use it," added Cetin.

Researchers say the project should last for about 15 months.