In an effort to limit potential floodwater damages, Supervisor Bill Reilich has commissioned the installation of shut-off valves, new piping, and a new berm structure in critical locations where the surging waters caused the greatest impact throughout last year’s flooding events.
During the severe flooding event that occurred over several months last year, the high lake and pond levels caused water to surge back up storm pipes and caused flooding along our shoreline roads. At the peak of this flooding, Town DPW staff deployed and maintained, around the clock, approximately 41 pumps ranging from 4” to 8” in an effort to keep flood waters from making our roads impassable. Basically, pump hoses were placed in the storm sewer at the storm grates, which threw the surging waters back into the ponds and the lake. However, these many pumps needed to be maintained and fueled so they could operate 24 hours/day. Knowing that water front residents may experience similar conditions this year, Supervisor Reilich started exploring a better and more efficient way to assist with managing the effects of the surges of water. Through much research it was determined that installing shut-off valves and new piping would ease the stress of operating and fueling pumps 24 hours a day.
Once the shut off valves are installed, and if we experience high lake and pond waters again this year, DPW crews can close these valves, which will greatly reduce the need for pumps and help to keep our roads clear of flood waters and safe for residents. Town engineers and Town staff identified critical locations, designed plans, and are currently working alongside a contractor to oversee the installation.
There are currently 11 locations which are the responsibility of the Town of Greece and where shut off valves are being installed, ranging in size from 8” to 30”. Installation of the first few pumps is already underway on Old Edgemere Drive between Wake Drive and Goodwin Park, where the channel connecting Long Pond empties into Lake Ontario. The valve systems are being installed below ground, which eliminates the possibility of an above ground structure being struck and damaged. This design was also chosen so that residents wouldn’t have mechanical structures on or near their properties.
Town engineers are also completing plans to construct a raised berm structure by Edgemere Drive and the Kodak Pump Station, along Round Pond. During the flooding events last year, high waters in Round Pond caused it to overflow, flooding the residential properties and this section of Edgemere Drive. This was an area that saw the most severe flooding which caused Edgemere Drive to be completely closed for an extended period of time. During that time, DPW and National Guard troops constructed a temporary block and sandbag wall to hold back the high waters of Round Pond. However, Supervisor Reilich recognized the need for a permanent structure and gave instructions for a new berm to be installed as a barrier to protect residents and ensure the road is safe for travel.
“I will continue my efforts to employ preventive measures to help ensure water front residents are not exposed to the devastating damages that occurred last year and to do all we can to limit damages in the event of a repeat of last year’s rising waters” said Supervisor Reilich. “I am hopeful that by installing the new berm, along with the installation of shut-off valves and new piping, that damages will be significantly limited by potential floodwaters. In addition to these projects, I have also established plans once again for sandbags to be filled and provided to residents in need and for pumps to be deployed. I will continue taking measures to protect residents in the event that we experience high water levels again this year. I continue to reach out to agencies throughout New York State and I am also making certain the IJC is engaged and alerted to the already high levels” Reilich said.