Resident praises flood fix

Larger pipeline in McKownville improves stormwater situation near Stuyvesant Plaza

Don Reeb, president of the McKownville Improvement Association, commended the Guilderland Town Board at the Tuesday, Feb. 2, meeting for their efforts to mitigate stormwater flooding that routinely occurs on Western Avenue near Stuyvesant Plaza.

The project, which began in the fall, increased the diameter of the pipeline that empties stormwater into the McKownville Resevoir. The town took the opportunity to begin the process of turning the area into a park, complete with a short trail, a bridge and a picnic area. Construction on the park should be complete in the summer.

Reeb said that the improved plumbing has eliminated the flooding in the area. He said the heavy rainstorm that hit the area in late January normally would have caused enormous flooding, but didn't.

Supervisor Ken Runion said the flooding in the area has been going on for 20 to 25 years, and the town worked with Assemblyman John McEneny, D-Albany, the state Department of Transportation, the state Department of Parks and Recreation and Stuyvesant Plaza to "come up with a situation that would make it bearable."

McEneny said in the early 1990s the project was slated to cost around $8 million, over 13 times the price of the actual cost of $600,000.

"There's been some real progress, and it has been at a bargain rate," said McEneny.

Funding for the project included $100,000 from Stuyvesant Plaza, $100,000 from the Department of Recreation, $200,000 from a multi-modal grant obtained by McEneny's office, and $200,000 from the Department of Transportation.

Although there is progress, McEneny says it was not a perfect solution, and he still expects the area to flood every few years.

"Springtime will be the real test when the ground is frozen and a thunder storm occurs," said Joe Galu, director of research in McEneny's office. ""

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