Flood Control Stories

I guess when I first read the storm water report authored by Camp Dresser and McGee (The CDM report) I pressed the panic button.   CDM is an old fashioned civil engineering outfit, and they believe in spending money on pipes, the bigger the better. If they had their way, every street in Northampton would be dug up to replace smaller pipes with bigger pipes, pipes that would channel almost all of our storm water into the Connecticut and the Mill River, which just makes life more difficult for people downstream.  The DPW board has backed away from implementing most of their engineering plans. CDM is not big on small detention ponds, in handling storm flows close to their origin.  So now the CDM report and energetic lobbying by the DPW has given us a new enterprise fund, and due to some tricky last minute lobbying by the city attorney, the fund is not capped.  So the worst of CDM's ideas, the big pipe from the Fairgrounds to the Connecticut is still on the table, so there is reason for vigilance. 

                       The CDM answer for flooding near the Ryan Road School, which involved running a big pipe through the playing fields. A possible cheaper answer, involving detention ponds and wells and some clearing of sediment from the brook. 

Are you Green?          How the so-called rain tax might work out, in terms of future impact on our tax rate. 


Three County Project        CDM's  crazy plan to solve flooding in Ward Three by laying a big pipe through the airport to the river. It will work only if our political influence is big enough to let Northampton violate  environment enforcement standards.   Potent funny business has already taken place around the Fair's close relationship to the city and the chamber of commerce. 

Before and After     Two diagrams from Three County Plans showing the dramatic increase in impermeable area as the Fair Development Corporation fleshes out and funds its development plans.

Stormy DPW meeting    A report on the September 18th, 2013 neeting of the Department of Public Works

The King Street Brook makes a dramatic comeback.  What role might the Stop & Shop play in the frequent flooding around Church Street

Carlon Drive.  How the city made the high water threat even worse by okaying a development off King Street for the new Fire Station

Chamber of Commerce: Ten, The People Zero  The story of how the ad-hoc committee to set rates was manipulated by insiders, and how the city council managed to head off debate on their two recommendations.