Merrillville considers alternative drainage plan for Meadowdale
By Karen Caffarini Post-Tribune correspondent August 6, 2013 9:04PM
Updated: September 12, 2013 6:13AM
MERRILLVILLE — Stormwater Utility Executive Director Matt Lake says he’s working on an alternative drainage solution for properties in the Meadowdale area that would involve town-owned vacant land.
Lake told the Stormwater Management Board last week that the properties on 53rd Court rely on a lift station that was installed years ago and operates on electric power.
“If there’s a power outage, the homes could flood. Now, every time there’s an outage someone from town needs to go out there to make sure the lift’s running,” Lake said.
He said the town owns nine vacant acres across from 54th Court that already have two catch basins in them that could serve a dual purpose: to provide drainage for the town homes in the area and to serve as a wetland mitigation reserve bank.
He said the water would drain from the property into Turkey Creek.
Lake said the town could mitigate any wetlands used for development purposes in another location with the wetland reserve bank.
Lake said a study needs to be done first, however.
In other matters, Darren Olson, of Christopher Burke Engineering, presented a report on the town’s Stormwater Master Plan update, which he said is the first update since 1987.
Olson said the master plan will identify drainage improvement projects needed to reduce flood risk and improve water quality and the cost estimates for these projects. The plan also will develop a data base for all storm water data and provide a report that could be incorporated with town planning for future grant application purposes, Olson said.
Olson said the Meadowdale and Bon Aire Lake areas on the north side of town, off Taft Street, have the most flood and repetitive loss areas according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
“Railroad tracks block some of the areas,” Olson said.