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Council discusses watershed permit

The Glencoe City Council further discussed the Northeast Drainage project at its regular meeting Monday night, choosing to table a decision to submit a formal permit to the Buffalo Creek Watershed until more financing information was available.
The city has previously submitted draft permit applications to the watershed board, but not a final permit request.
The city’s original plan for the project was a 30-inch pipe running from Glencoe-Silver Lake High School’s wetlands east to the East Ditch.
After presenting to the watershed board and meeting with its engineers, Short Elliot Hendrickson (SEH) Engineer Justin Black said the city’s revised permit will be for a 15-inch pipe that will run along the same route.
Black explained the 15-inch is the largest pipe size the Buffalo Creek Watershed Board would permit.
With the smaller pipe, Black said the project would still provide a deeper outlet for the school in order to meet the city’s requirements and would reduce some of the wetland elevation. However, when the central pond and east wetland system is full, the 30-inch would have drained back to normal level in two to three days while the 15-inch will take a few weeks. So the city will still have some level of flooding in large rain events.
“The benefit to the city has been greatly diminished,” Black said.
With a permit from the watershed, the city will have to further research how to get approval to access the Buffalo Creek, and if approval is necessary.
Black explained the city had looked at other options before this plan, but this one is the most cost efficient.
Council Member Kevin Dietz asked how the new pipe size will tie in if the Morningside Avenue project, which will extend Morningside Avenue, is approved. Black said the ponding in the project will have to be larger.
Council Member Allen Robeck brought up a project that County Commissioner Doug Krueger is putting together, but Council Member John Schrupp said the city needs something sooner than that.
“We need to resolve our issues here and I think the 15-inch, it’s not going to make it worse,” Schrupp said. “It’s the only answer we have.”
Krueger, who was present, agreed.

For more, see the March 23 print edition of The Chronicle.