Archive for October, 2009|Monthly archive page

Erie County Plans to Rebuild Culvert on S Bflo St

In Dept of Public Works, S Bflo St Culvert on October 18, 2009 at 9:34 pm

At a recent meeting of Erie County and Springville officials concerning the damaged culvert on South Buffalo Street, Erie County Public Works Commissioner Jerry Sentz explained a 3 to 5 year project to rebuild the culvert.  The street has been closed since last winter when the soil began to erode under the sidewalk on the west side of the street.

Sentz estimates that the reconstruction cost will be about $2,500,000. and take three to five years to complete.  Most of this time will be spent securing financing and conducting engineering studies.  The extensive project will include NYS Department of Environment, and Army Corp of Engineers.  County Legislator John Mills is contacting Congressman Brian Higgins to secure support for the project.

A previous plan to repair the culvert, open the street to traffic by next spring, and seek a long term solution in the next ten years was abandoned by Erie County after a closer examination of the damaged culvert. Examination of soil samples and the stream bank showed that the stream bed of Spring Creek dropped causing the west end of the culvert to crack.  The break in the culvert caused the erosion of the road bed.  And the drop in creek bed has caused the erosion of the surrounding stream bank.

According the Sentz, the damage to the culvert and the condition of the stream banks immediately down stream make any immediate and short term repair of the existing culvert impossible.   “From an engineering stand point, a temporary fix is impossible,” said Sentz.

To rebuild the culvert, the County proposes to eliminate the existing spillway upstream and replace it with a culvert that angles down from the east side of the street before it levels offs on the west side of the street.  This design would channel the flow of water through the elevation drop from the east side to the west side of the road, and slow the flow of water down stream.

As the engineering and financing of the project begins, the County plans immediate steps to mitigate the erosion at the sinkhole, and to secure the safety of the site.  Karl Lux , Springville DPW Superintendent noted that water runoff from both the north and south sides of the street are causing the continual erosion.  Sentz is planning sandbag check dams to divert the water runoff to the sides of South Buffalo St.  Village Administrator Tim Horner explained that the culvert’s proximity to the Springville Youth Inc.grounds causes a safety issue.  Sentz is planning to extend the fence to the creek bed to further deter children from entering the culvert site.

Mayor Bill Krebs asked Sentz to plan for snow removal during the winter months.  The street was closed last winter from Woodward south, preventing access to SYI.  After a brief discussion, Sentz said he would instruction local County crews to plow the snow to the east side of the street and keep access open to SYI.

Krebs said “I’m encouraged about the Erie County plan to fix the problem on this street.  I am not satisfied with the projected five years, but the County’s latest plan will eventually address all our concerns.”

According to Krebs, “The closing of the street for three to five more years is a great disappointment to area residents who use South Buffalo Street daily.  The rerouting of traffic tries the patience of drivers and increases the traffic on Village streets and in the Municipal Parking Lot.  Its continued closure remains a substantial threat to the infrastructure of Village.  The sewer line on the east side of the street remains vulnerable to the erosion, and the rerouting of this sewer line will cost about $300,000.  Also, the erosion at the sinkhole continues to threaten SYI.”

Erie County plans to meet again with Springville concerning the culvert next month.