In Fairfield, Connecticut, north of Interstate 95, there was a flooding problem. The highway embankment constricted the flow of the Rooster River and caused upstream flooding, drowning out a residential neighborhood. A previous study of the problem suggested raising portions of the nearby US Route 1 to act as a large dike, but the community voted that option down—it would’ve been unsightly and costly.
We had to come up with a creative alternative that would achieve the flood control objectives, and the community had to like the solution. After re-examining the entire watershed basin, focusing on the three-mile stretch of river between the Long Island Sound and US Route 1, we settled on detention ponds and downsized, rerouted pumping stations. Options that could be easily hidden from view and allow the community to maintain their aesthetics.
The final recommended improvements were well received by the public and the DEP Inland Water Resources Division officials—and we managed significant cost savings over the recommendations of the previous study. Working with the community’s predilections in mind, we delivered a solid foundation for a flood-free neighborhood.