Milford takes first step in studying Fourth Street flooding

MILFORD — City of Milford engineer James Puddicombe met Friday with fellow engineers from several firms that have expressed interest in studying the Fourth Street Watershed.

“This is basically almost a pre-bid meeting,” Mr. Puddicombe said at the beginning of the call.

“The project is for Fourth Street flooding. We have an area in the city where we have some flooding problems and some older stormwater systems,” he said.

He explained that the city has been awarded a grant to carry out the study.

“Our goal is to try to basically identify the issue and to identify any environmental concerns that are being caused because of it aside from some damage that has been happening to some of the local residents’ property,” Mr. Puddicombe said.

He said the area around the corner of North Walnut Street and Fourth Street is a basin. When it rains heavily, the stormwater system often overflows, causing flooding in the neighborhood.

Mr. Puddicombe listed four main goals for the project.

“One is to evaluate the stormwater system,” he said. “Second is to determine the cause of the flooding, which could include a poor stormwater system.”

Mr. Puddicombe’s third goal “is to determine any sort of associated environmental costs with the flooding and the backups. The fourth is to make suggestions for next steps.”

He said the stormwater is old but not ancient.

“It’s not all brick, but there are some brick catch basins,” Mr. Puddicombe said.

He added that there are some segments of the stormwater system in that area that literally run through people’s basements in the neighborhood.

“Part of what we’re looking at is maybe rerouting that,” Mr. Puddicombe said. “Obviously, having a pipe run through somebody’s basement isn’t really ideal.”