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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 16-104

October 14, 2016

DEP (718) 595-6600; DDC (718) 391-1583

$132 Million Infrastructure Upgrade in College Point Will Reduce Roadway Flooding and Improve the Health of the Upper East River and Flushing Bay

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Construction of Nearly 12 miles of New Sewers and More than 400 Catch Basins will Reduce Roadway Flooding

Three Existing Combined Sewer Outfalls will be Decommissioned—Reducing Combined Sewer Overflows into the Upper East River and Flushing Bay by Nearly 50 Million Gallons Annually

Photos of the Work and a Map of the Project Area are Available on DEP’s Flickr Page

The New York City Departments of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Design and Construction (DDC) today announced that work is under way on a $132 million project in the College Point neighborhood of Queens that will reduce street flooding and improve the health of the Upper East River and Flushing Bay. The work will include the construction of more than 400 new catch basins, nearly 12 miles of new sewers and nearly 10 miles of new water mains. Construction of new storm sewers will allow for the decommissioning of three existing combined sewer outfalls. During heavy rain storms, untreated sewage mixed with stormwater from roadways can be discharged from combined sewer outfalls. By closing these three outfalls, it is estimated that combined sewer overflows into the Upper East River and Flushing Bay will be reduced by nearly 50 million gallons annually, thereby improving the health of the waterways. DEP is funding the project and DDC is managing the construction.

“This project represents a $132 million investment towards improving the quality of life for the College Point neighborhood,” said DEP Acting Commissioner Vincent Sapienza. “The work will reduce roadway flooding, ensure a reliable supply of drinking water and improve the health of the Upper East River and Flushing Bay.”

“In keeping with Mayor de Blasio’s vision for a sustainable and resilient city, we are proud to partner with DEP to improve sewers for residents in the College Point area. The addition of the new storm sewers will not only prevent flooding in the neighborhood, but it also represents a significant investment by the City in the health of the Upper East River and Flushing Bay,” said DDC Commissioner Feniosky Peña-Mora.

In total, the project will see the addition of 404 new catch basins, 33,839 feet of storm sewers, 29,177 feet of sanitary sewers and 51,624 feet of distribution water mains. Once the subsurface construction is completed, all affected roadways will be resurfaced (see map for information on where the construction is taking place and when work begins and ends). In addition, existing wetlands along Flushing Bay and the Upper East River will be expanded through the planting of roughly 10,000 square feet of additional salt marsh cordgrass, which will also help to improve water quality.

Construction of the new storm sewers will allow for the closure of three existing combined sewer outfalls along the Upper East River and Flushing Bay. This will avoid the release of nearly 50 million gallons annually of combined sewer overflow—a mix of untreated sanitary sewage and stormwater. The closure of the three combined sewer outfalls will improve the health of both the Upper East River and Flushing Bay. As part of the work, three new stormwater only outfalls will be constructed. The stormwater outfall to be built on the north side of Hermon A. MacNeil Park has been coordinated with the Department of Parks and Recreation to avoid conflicts with a proposed kayak launch in the same area.

DEP manages New York City’s water supply, providing approximately 1 billion gallons of high-quality water each day to more than 9 million residents, including 8.5 million in New York City. The water is delivered from a watershed that extends more than 125 miles from the city, comprising 19 reservoirs and three controlled lakes. Approximately 7,000 miles of water mains, tunnels and aqueducts bring water to homes and businesses throughout the five boroughs, and 7,500 miles of sewer lines and 96 pump stations take wastewater to 14 in-city treatment plants. DEP has nearly 6,000 employees, including almost 1,000 in the upstate watershed. In addition, DEP has a robust capital program, with a planned $14 billion in investments over the next 10 years that will create up to 3,000 construction-related jobs per year. For more information, visit nyc.gov/dep, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

The Department of Design and Construction is the City’s primary capital construction project manager. In supporting Mayor de Blasio’s lenses of growth, sustainability, resiliency, equity and healthy living, DDC provides communities with new or renovated public buildings such as such as firehouses, libraries, police precincts, new or upgraded roadways, sewers, water mains in all five boroughs. To manage this $15 billion portfolio, DDC partners with other City agencies, architects and consultants, whose experience bring efficient, innovative, and environmentally-conscious design and construction strategies to city projects. For more information, please visit nyc.gov/ddc.

More Information

NYC Department of Environmental Protection
Public Affairs

59-17 Junction Boulevard
19th Floor
Flushing, NY 11373

(718) 595-6600