By Mark Hallum

Glen Oaks will soon receive an updated water and sewer infrastructure, thanks to a project on which city officials broke ground last week.

The $9.3 million upgrade announced by the Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of Design and Construction is an attempt to manage chronic flooding as well as to replace outdated water mains which feed into homes and fire hydrants.

Work has officially begun to install nearly a mile of storm sewers and 58 catch basins designed to divert water from roads which are known to flood during severe rainstorms, a safety issue for many on the road.

According to state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside), chronic flooding is a quality-of-life problem for the residents of Glen Oaks. State Assemblyman Edward Braunstein (D-Bayside) said updating sewer and water infrastructure is an issue inhabitants of the neighborhood have been concerned about for several years.

“The hills and valleys of the Glen Oaks neighborhood presented a rather unique engineering challenge and our team has developed a drainage plan that we are confident will help to better manage stormwater, reduce flooding and make the roadways safer for everyone,” DEP Acting Commissioner Steven Lawitts said. “We are excited that shovels are in the ground and look forward to working with our partners at DDC to bring some relief to area residents.”

The project will replace the 60-year-old pipes which feed into homes and fire protection infrastructure with new iron mains. The DDC will also take this opportunity to rehabilitate sanitary sewers and install 21 new fire hydrants.

“Once these sewers are installed the city will be stronger and more resilient against flooding, and the neighborhood can be confident that its infrastructure can handle anything that might come its way,” DDC Commissioner Feniosky Peña-Mora said.

Funding for the project will come from the DEP, while the DDC is responsible for managing construction, which is expected to be complete by early 2018.

Reach reporter Mark Hallum by e-mail at mhallum@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4564.

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