Sampling begins on Spring Creek South

Michael S

Efforts to protect Howard Beach from environmental degradation in future hurricanes has taken another step forward.

State Sen. Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr. (D-Howard Beach) announced Tuesday a six-week-long initiative to collect soil samples from Spring Creek South, a wetland area in the northern Jamaica Bay in Howard Beach. The sampling is part of the multifaceted project to protect Howard Beach residents and their property from future storm damage.

Beginning Monday, the state Department of Environmental Conservation will have crews at the intersection of 165th Avenue and 87th Street and at 164th Avenue and 83rd Street to collect samples of soil that will be tested for potential contamination. The project, funded by FEMA, will give key insight into the development of an elevated berm, set to begin in 2017, to help protect against flooding and other storm issues.

“Any project aimed at storm recovery and resiliency is always welcomed in my district,” said Addabbo. “In 2012, when Sandy devastated communities in southern Queens, we saw first-hand the need for more protection from possible flooding and other damage from a major coastal storm. Projects such as this one work toward accomplishing that goal of making Queens better prepared for a natural weather phenomenon than ever before. I thank the state DEC for their commitment to this cause and for working with elected officials and constituents to ensure this project runs smoothly.”

The senator also reiterated his intention to keep a close watch on this project and to inform his constituency of any possible, temporary inconveniences the project may have on local streets.

The initiative is part of the larger $50 million Spring Creek Hazard Mitigation project.

According to DEC, the Spring Creek South Storm Protection and Ecosystem Restoration project aims to reduce the risk of storm damage and flooding in Howard Beach through the construction of the protective berm.

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