Lawrence flood mitigation project to begin in 2020

Final design approval expected in January


Nassau County officials are anticipating shovels to hit dirt for a Lawrence village flood mitigation project in the spring of 2020. Details of what is called the Lawrence Pipe Improvement Plan were discussed during a Lawrence Association meeting at Peninsula Public Library on Nov. 13.

Nassau County Planning Division project manager Joseph Cuomo and engineer for Brookhaven-based LKMA, Bob Steele, presented the plan that aims to reduce flooding in the 287-acre watershed area that extends from the Lawrence Long Island Rail Road station to Bannister Bay.

The work includes the installation of two 60-inch large pipes and backflow-prevention devices. Construction will take place on Meadow Lane, south of Broadway, and stretch to the end of Causeway, south of Rock Hall Road, near the Lawrence Yacht & Country Club. Officials said the design phase is on schedule to go out for bid and be completed by January, Cuomo/Steele said.  

Money for the project came from the Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery. GOSR was established in 2013 to coordinate rebuilding after Tropical Storms Irene and Lee as well as Hurricane Sandy. The total funding for the Lawrence project was $8.776 million.

Steele noted that how the money is being used. “While the number comes in at almost $9 million, there is a certain amount set aside for design and construction inspection,” he said. “Were estimating that there will be a little under $7 million for the construction itself.” 

Lawrence mayor Alex Edelman asked if the $7 million will be enough once out to bid. Steele said he hoped so. “Just to be honest, it’s a busy season for contractors and the prices are coming in high,” he said. “We’re hoping the price comes in around $7 million.”

Resident Fay Sladowsky asked if the flooding issues at her residence on Sutton Place in Lawrence would be addressed with this plan. Cuomo responded by saying no. “Sutton Place was not discussed in our study and planning process,” he said. “I can’t give an honest answer as to when that area will be addressed.” Cuomo added that further work in the village could take as long as 10 years.

Sladowsky expressed some disappointment after the presentation. “It’s great that the flooding issues are being addressed here in the village,” she said. “But it would be nice if my area was addressed. Ten years from now, this may not be my issue.”

Her residence is at the “lowest point” of Sutton Place and it received significant damage during Hurricane Sandy, she said. “When the adjuster came to our house after the storm, he said that our house was the worst damage he’d seen in the village,” Sladowsky said. “While I was able to evacuate my house before the storm, it was devastating to have to throw out most things that I owned.” 

With anticipation of the design phase being completed by January, Cuomo added that he is expecting construction to start in the spring of 2020. “We plan to have shovels in the ground sometime in the middle of spring,” he said. “Once it starts, were estimating the construction to take about a year.”