FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 12, 2008
SCHUMER ANNOUNCES: AFTER DECADE-LONG DELAY, ARMY CORPS GIVES THE GREEN LIGHT TO PROJECT THAT WILL CONTROL SEVERE FLOODING IN INRONDEQUOIT
Schumer Successfully Pushed For Army Corps to Approve Flood Mitigation Project in Time for Fall - Town to Expedite Construction
Work Must Be Done Between May and October But Town Could Not Start Construction Without Official Army Corps Approval
Project Calls for Realigning Stream, Elevating Roads, Adding Culverts and Erosion Barriers
After over a decade of delay by the Army Corps, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced approval of a flood mitigation project designed to control severe flooding that happens during heavy rains in Irondequoit’s Huntington Hills neighborhood. Schumer lobbied the Army Corps for a decision on the project before another construction season slipped away, leaving residents to face another year of flooded roads, property damage, and flooded basements.
Heavy rainfall often causes significant flooding caused by stream ONT-112 flowing in the Huntington Hills neighborhood in the town of Irondequoit. To alleviate the flooding, the town proposed a mitigation project that called for realigning the stream, elevating roads, adding culverts and erosion barriers. But despite ten years of negotiations, the town was unable to solicit Army Corps Jurisdictional Determination, an official designation needed to begin construction on a flood mitigation project.
To ensure the project was done in time for fall, Senator Schumer pushed to expedite the project and today announced that the Army Corps has cleared the way for the town to begin construction.
“Bureaucratic red tape kept this project tied up for far too long and I am thrilled that we will soon see construction started on this much-needed flood prevention project,” Schumer said. “Now that the Army Corps has given the green light, we will soon see some relief to the flooding that plagued this Irondequoit neighborhood. I am pleased that the project has been approved so that construction can begin immediately and in the necessary timeframe.”
Irondequoit Town Supervisor Mary Ellen Heyman praised the project’s approval and the Senator’s hard work on the issue.
“In January 2006, Don Becker and the Homeowners Association reached out to me with a problem which had plagued Spring Valley for years. Two and a half years and two engineering firms later the project was only able to move forward with the hard work of Senator Charles Schumer,” Heyman said. “Schumer and his staff responded to my call for help as yet another season was passing us by. Unable to obtain the required permit from the Army Corps of Engineers, after years of calling, visiting, meeting, on site visits and more calling and e-mails Senator Schumer was able to motivate the Corps to move this project off the desk and to completion. My personal thank you to the Senator for helping us resolve this long standing neighborhood issue.”
For over 15 years, the town of Irondequoit has experienced significant flooding when heavy rainfall causes a small stream to overflow onto Conifer Lane, Hoffman Road and Spring Valley Drive in the town of Irondequoit. When there is significant rainfall, roads flood with water and become inaccessible to cars, sometimes for days. The flooding often causes property damage, including debris, tree limbs and soil erosion, as well as basement flooding.
The problem stems from the construction of a near-by housing development over 15 years ago that was built with an inadequate drainage system. Now drainage from that neighborhood spills into ONT-112, flooding the Huntington Hills neighborhood.
To ease the problem, the town has planned a mitigation project that calls for raising Hoffman Road and Conifer Lane and adding culverts under each of the roads to stop the flooding. The project also calls for a realignment of the small stream with erosion barriers and stream corridor enhancements along Spring Valley Drive. The project needed Army Corps approval because the neighborhood sits on a wetland – which the Army Corps regulates – and it needed it to be rushed due to New York State requirements that work on the project be completed by October 1, 2008 due to trout spawning in the stream.
To ensure the project was done in time for fall, Senator Schumer’s office pushed for its completion and today announced that the Army Corps has cleared the way for the town to begin construction. The project should now be completed in the necessary timeframe.
“I am glad that we were able to help move this project along so that Irondequoit residents don’t have to worry about property damage when it rains,” Schumer said. “I will continue to help this project come to fruition in any way possible.”