(Staten Island, NY – September 16, 2021) The New York City Departments of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Design and Construction (DDC) today announced the completion of a $33.1 million drainage upgrade in the Travis neighborhood on Staten Island. The work included the installation of new storm sewers, sanitary sewers, water mains, catch basins and fire hydrants. In addition, a new Bluebelt wetland was built to store, filter and direct the stormwater away from homes and businesses and towards the Arthur Kill. DEP provided funding for the project while DDC managed the construction, which began in 2018 and was completed on-time.
“This $33.1 million investment in new sewers, water mains and a Bluebelt wetland means an improved quality of life for the residents and businesses in the Travis community,” said DEP Commissioner Vincent Sapienza. “This is just one of the dozens of multi-million dollar drainage upgrades taking place simultaneously across the city all year long, and we will continue to make these types of investments in both traditional sewers and catch basins, as well as newer drainage infrastructure, like Bluebelts.”
“This project brings a mile-and-a-half of new storm sewers plus another Bluebelt wetland for natural stormwater management, which helps relieve some of the drainage burden from neighborhoods during sudden and intense rainfall,” said DDC Commissioner Jamie Torres-Springer. “Since 2018, DDC has completed 27 infrastructure projects in the borough valued at more than $440 million with no construction-related delays, even through the pandemic.”
“It has been exactly 20 years since I visited Travis with former DEP official Doug Greeley to identify locations where sewage overflows and storm water surges have plagued residents for decades. I am thrilled to see the completion of these new sewers and catch basins, which is infrastructure that is desperately needed for residents living in the area,” said Staten Island Borough President James Oddo. “The folks at DEP have been working tirelessly to mitigate flooding for so many neighborhoods on Staten Island and adding Travis to that list is just another win for our borough. With the unfortunate weather events Staten Islanders have endured recently, it is so important to continue to invest in advancing Bluebelts already in design and building others wherever we can across the city. I thank Commissioner Sapienza and his staff for their persistence and dedication.”
“The completion of this project is welcome news,” said Congress Member Nicole Malliotakis. “We need more investment in sewer systems, storm drains and flood mitigation projects if we are to protect neighborhoods like Travis from future flooding and damage.”
“This project has been a long time coming, but I am extremely pleased to have worked with the DEP and my colleagues to finally see it to fruition,” said Council Member Steven Matteo. “These are exactly the type of multi-pronged water management solutions we should continue to pursue to protect our borough's infrastructure and its residents from the continued risks of heavy flooding.”
“Recent weeks have served as a clear reminder that stormwater management infrastructure is vital to the well-being and quality of life for our community,” said State Senator Andrew Lanza. “For many decades, Travis residents have seen flood after flood so the completion of this $28 million stormwater management project is welcome news. I thank DDC and DEP, and look forward to our continued partnership in bringing the necessary infrastructure to the Staten Island community.”
As part of the project, more than 8,400 linear feet of new storm sewers were installed along Victory Boulevard, from Baron Boulevard to Glen Street, as well as portions of Glen Street, Melvin Avenue, Wild Avenue, Parish Avenue, Cannon Avenue, Prices Lane, Burke Avenue, Leroy Street, Meredith Avenue, Simmons Lane and Shelley Avenue. Work included the construction of 90 new catch basins and the replacement of 14 existing catch basins, which has helped better drain stormwater from the surrounding streets and into the newly enlarged drainage system. Additionally, seven new underground storm chambers were built to further increase the capacity of the storm sewer system.
Complementing the drainage upgrade is the newly constructed Bluebelt wetland, which is approximately one acre in size and runs parallel to Cannon Avenue, between Parish Avenue and Prices Lane. The Bluebelt consists of an outlet stilling basin situated where the storm sewer discharges off of Cannon Avenue. This basin was designed to reduce the velocity of stormwater entering the natural area and to intercept litter and sediment for removal by Bluebelt field personnel. A stone-faced outfall directs stormwater from the upgraded drainage network into the newly built wetland area, which eventually flows into Meredith Creek and ultimately empties into the Arthur Kill.
In addition, the site consists of freshwater and tidal wetland restoration that is visible from the West Shore Expressway. To foster a diverse habitat for wildlife, the Bluebelt was planted with 370 shrubs and 120 trees. Part of the site was privately owned land that was acquired by DEP for this project. The other portion of the site is within Meredith Woods Park under the jurisdiction of the City’s Department of Parks and Recreation.
To improve the drinking water distribution system, almost four miles (20,800 linear feet) of new water mains made from concrete-lined ductile iron, which is more resilient and less prone to breakage, were added to replace older cast iron pipes. Fire protection was enhanced with the addition of 11 new fire hydrants and the replacement of 50 existing fire hydrants, ensuring firefighters have ready access to the City’s water supply during emergencies. In addition, almost 3,500 linear feet of new sanitary sewers were replaced.
As part of the final street restoration, 44,182 square yards of roadway was resurfaced, 20,475 square feet of sidewalk was reconstructed with 6,825 square feet added, and 4,895 linear feet of concrete curbs were rebuilt with 6,052 linear feet of new curbs installed. Throughout the project area, 31 pedestrian ramps were replaced and three new ramps were installed.
More photos and a map of the project area are available here.
About the NYC Department of Design and Construction
The Department of Design and Construction is the City’s primary capital construction project manager. In supporting Mayor de Blasio’s long-term vision of growth, sustainability, resiliency, equity and healthy living, DDC provides communities with new or renovated public buildings such as firehouses, libraries, police precincts, and new or upgraded roads, sewers and water mains in all five boroughs. To manage this $15.5 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.
About the NYC Department of Environmental Protection
DEP manages New York City’s water supply, providing approximately 1 billion gallons of high-quality drinking water each day to more than 9 million residents, including 8.3 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 a robust capital program, with a planned $20.1 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.