Government

North Salem Plans to Alleviate Drainage Issues Advance

NORTH SALEM, N.Y.--Homeowners on Westview and Ridgeway avenues could see their properties’ drainage issues resolved, but officials anticipate some of them may not be happy about it.

The neighborhoods, which lie back to back and run parallel to Route 684, were built in the late 1950s, according to Highway Superintendent Ward Hanaburgh. Since then, the town has had an easement where the properties’ back yards meet with a drainage ditch to accommodate the area’s stormwater runoff. The easement is about 1,000 feet long and 10 feet wide, Hanaburgh said.

The ditch was built so that stormwater runoff could drain from neighborhood properties toward a single place. But over the last 70 years, the drainage ditch has been naturally filled in by vegetation and trees. As a result, homeowners are experiencing backups and other water issues, such as flooding in their basements during storms. Supervisor Warren Lucas mentioned that this was an issue on Hanaburgh’s radar for years.

Sign Up for E-News

“We’re slowly trying to chip away at it,” Lucas said of the town’s drainage problems. “[They’re] just very expensive issues.”
Now, Hanaburgh said, it’s time to get the ball rolling.

Site surveys were completed three years ago, he said, and are still valid. The next step is for the town engineer to draft concept plans. Once those plans are drafted, the board will have a better idea of what the cost of the project will be and can put together a bid package. Right now, Lucas said, he expects it will cost at least five figures.
 

Hanaburgh suggested a grass swale be created on the easement to accommodate the neighborhoods’ water runoff. The main issue, he said, will be the removal of the trees that have grown on the land; the trees are large and there is only a 10-foot right-of-way for the town’s crews to work in.

Lucas said the properties the easement runs along is not split down the middle, so the homeowners who will be affected are not the ones experiencing drainage issues.

“The people that have the easement (on Ridgeway) do not have the drainage problem; it’s the people on Westview.”

Many of these unsuspecting homeowners, prior to when the town alerted them of the easement via mail two years ago, have built on the easement, unaware that that portions of their properties are town-owned.

“We have sheds on the easement, gardens, fences–everything,” Hanaburgh said. “So it gets a little involved when we go up to start doing the work.”

Additionally, Lucas said he suspects residents on Ridgeway will not be pleased by the removal of the trees because they act as a sound barrier for Route 684, which runs along the other side of Westview. Although the homes on Westview also offer a bit of a buffer for the homeowners on Ridgeway, the road noise is a well-documented complaint among Ridgeway homeowners.

The board unanimously passed a resolution to authorize the town engineer to start drawing up plans for the site. Lucas said the project will likely go out for bid next year. 

“That’s our responsibility as the town because it is our easement,” Hanaburgh said, adding that if the town doesn’t prioritize the issue it’s likely to “end up in litigation down the road.”

Lucas said that once plans are drafted, town officials will sit down with homeowners and outline how the project might affect each individual property. Hanaburgh stressed that the town is willing to work with potentially affected homeowners, but that when it comes to tree removal, they really have no choice in the matter, as that area’s drainage is interconnected with other neighborhoods’ and the success of each one is necessary for the overall system.

There are drainage areas south of those neighborhoods that could be the site of future drainage remediation as well, he said; however, until Ridgeway and Westview avenues’ problems are addressed, work cannot begin on the others.

“It’s all coming to the point where everything’s going to have to get straightened out eventually,” he said.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

North Salem

Meeting Robert Kennedy

(This is the second installment in a series.)

It has been nearly 50 years since U.S. Sen. Robert F. Kennedy was fatally shot in the Hotel Ambassador in Los Angeles on June 5, 1968. I  have often thought how my life might have changed if the Palestinian assassin Sirhan Sirhan had not killed an outstanding statesman who I  was sure would have been elected president of the United States ...

Charlottesville Nazi March: Now With Facts

The Virginia State Police badly failed in its role to prevent violence and protect citizens at the Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Va., last August.

That is the key takeaway from a 200-page report on the rally released to the public Dec. 1. The report was written by Timothy J. Heaphy, a United States attorney hired by the city to investigate the debacle that ensued when the Nazi rally was met ...

Grateful to Organize

As a professional organizer, you would assume that I am passionate about organizing. I am not—I am passionate about people. Given the choice between being at home and dealing with my own piles or going to Pleasantville and sorting out Mrs. Martin’s closet, I will chose Mrs. Martin and her closet every single time. I enjoy my own company but I know that story and at this point, I would ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_d06a101993651aac0b78_n1712p31008h

Wed, December 13, 12:00 PM

Le Fontane Ristorante, Somers

Annual North Salem Seniors Holiday Party

Sat, December 16, 10:00 AM

Jefferson Valley Mall , Yorktown Heights

Yorktown Indoor Farmers Market

Food & Drink Health & Wellness

Sat, December 16, 7:30 PM

Eastchester Church, Eastchester

The Living Nativity

Arts & Entertainment Religions And Spirituality

The Millennial Guide to Shopping

My 27-year-old daughter, Elissa, asked me what I wanted this holiday season. My choice was one of those newfangled, voice-activated digital doodads disguised as an unassuming sound speaker but which otherwise behaves like the late, great Robin Williams’ Genie from Disney’s “Aladdin.” “Your wish is my command!”

Already knowing the two dominant brands in this ...

The Eyebrows Have It

As I perused the latest fashion magazine, I noticed something about the models.

They all had big eyebrows. Big, perfect eyebrows. Big, sculpted, perfectly groomed and arched eyebrows.

And I did not.

Not that I’m comparing myself to a model, because that would be impossible on just so many levels. I could not make myself 6 feet tall, 115 pounds and willowy without a body transplant.

Driver Injured in I-684 accident in Purdys

December 6, 2017

NORTH SALEM, N.Y.-A driver was injured in an early-morning accident last Wednesday, after his vehicle crashed and combusted going northbound on I-684 at about 1:30 a.m.

The Croton Falls Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to the scene at 1:38, where they extinguished the car, which had become engulled in flames, said Daniel Dreyer, chief of the Croton Falls Volunteer Fire Department ...