2018-03-02 / Community

Residents meet with officials to discuss drainage

By Allison New
Contributing Writer

Stephen D. Harding of Sebago Technics and Robert Malley, director of public works, go over proposed plans to improve water drainage in Beverly Terrace. (Allison New photo) Stephen D. Harding of Sebago Technics and Robert Malley, director of public works, go over proposed plans to improve water drainage in Beverly Terrace. (Allison New photo) CAPE ELIZABETH - Residents of the Beverly Terrace neighborhood met at town hall Monday, Feb. 26 to discuss solutions to the issue of standing water and groundwater flooding on their properties.

The standing water and groundwater has been flooding yards and basements, which is related to the partial failure of a common cellar drain that is connected to some homes on Beverly Terrace. Robert Malley, the Cape Elizabeth director of public works, contacted Sebago Technics in July 2017 about the drainage problem. Malley and other town officials have been working with Stephen D. Harding of Sebago Technics to find solutions to the standing water and groundwater issues faced by the residents. They have come up with two possible solutions that would bring improvement to the neighborhood. A plan and map with both proposed projects displayed on it was provided to the four residents in attendance.

The first solution proposed is to find and replace the current foundational drainage system. By replacing the existing clay pipe with a modern plastic pipe, the groundwater would be able to move more effectively from the watershed into Trout Brook. However, the new plastic pipe would not offer much relief from standing water on the surface. Excavation would be required to remove the current pipe and officials are not exactly sure where the pipe is located under the road. There is concern that the current clay pipe may run beneath some newer structures. The neighborhood was originally constructed for shipyard employees and their families during World War II, therefore anything built post World War II would be considered a newer structure. There have been several attempts to clear the current pipe from the known opening, but there has been no long term effect from those efforts. By utilizing this proposed project the groundwater and surface water issues would need to be addressed separately and the project is estimated to cost approximately $225,000.

The second and more popular solution suggests adding five proposed catch basins, with one being a drain manhole. The proposal also includes the use of sump pumps inside homes, which would be connected into a pipe system. The proposed catch basins would collect stormwater and surface water and then be redirected to Trout Brook. The sump pumps would be used in homes to aid in drainage as well. The cost for this project is approximately $100,000, which is substantially less than the first proposal.

While residents have been frustrated by the standing water and groundwater flooding, they did seem relieved to be presented with some viable options that would greatly improve Beverly Terrace. They are looking forward to seeing the standing water and groundwater problem come to an end.

“I hope this is a solution to a long standing issue,” said resident Elizabeth Mathson. As she left the meeting Mathson spoke highly of her family friendly neighborhood and seemed hopeful that plans were coming into focus. Once residents and town officials make the decision as to which proposal they want to use, it is estimated that the project will begin in summer 2018.

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