SSO Abatement Program In Tonawanda, NY

October 2012, Vol. 67 No. 10

Anthony F. Caruana, supervisor, Town of Tonawanda, NY, is very proud of his community. “Our Town slogan, ‘A Great Place to Live, Work and Play’ is the guiding principle of our administration. Tonawanda is home to over 74,000 residents who take pride in our community, boast of the successes and achievements of our children, and believe we must be caretakers of our elders and stewards of our resources and environment,” he explained.

For Tonawanda, being stewards of the environment extends to the preservations of natural resources such as the nearby Ellicott Creek, which discharges into the Niagara River that flows north from Lake Erie draining into Lake Ontario. The river includes a prominent tourist destination, Niagara Falls. The falls are actually a group of falls which include the Horseshoe Falls, American Falls and the smaller Bridal Veil Falls. The combined falls form the highest flow rate of any waterfall in the world, with a vertical drop of more than 165 feet.

Although in a picturesque area, the Tonawanda has been challenged recently to address their sanitary sewer overflows (SSO’s) which could have significant effect on residents and the environment. To address the aging infrastructure problem, the town is beginning a complex and cost intensive program which will abate numerous SSO’s, which can occur during wet weather events. In 2006, a major collapse occurred on the Parker-Fries Interceptor that required a costly repair and could have resulted in significant basement backups. This major interceptor became the first project in the town’s complex and cost intensive program to address the poor overall condition of the sewers.

Tonawanda selected CRA Infrastructure and Engineering Inc., (CRA), Buffalo, NY, to develop a set of improvements for the Parker-Fries Interceptor Project. The comprehensive plan included considerations of the existing interceptor alignment, utility conflicts, Parker Pump Station operation, subsurface geotechnical conditions and impacts to the residents.

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