State to review Gilboa Dam applications

The state Department of Environmental Conservation is reviewing permit applications for a project th

The state Department of Environmental Conservation is reviewing permit applications for a project that will lead to the major overhaul of the over-80-year-old Gilboa Dam.

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection is planning TO build a new access road, a temporary office complex, water supply wells, hauling roads and staging areas to prepare for $430 million in work to the dam that holds back the Schoharie Reservoir, one of several that supply drinking water to New York City.

The DEC is reviewing stream disturbance permit and Clean Water Act water quality certification for the work expected to disturb roughly 48 acres of land surrounding the dam.

The city is planning to address the dam’s deteriorating spillway, install crest gates to manage the flow of water, add a low-level outlet and restore the scenic public overlook area, according to DEP spokesman Michael Saucier.

The overall project is a major undertaking that is to be reviewed by numerous people, according to Kent Sanders, deputy regional permit administrator at DEC.

He said in addition to engineers employed by New York City, the dam’s overhaul is being reviewed by two engineering firms, dam safety engineers and an independent team of dam safety experts.

In terms of site preparation under review, Sanders said there is little environmental impact aside from the construction of a bridge to be built over the Schoharie Creek.

The large acreage to be used for construction efforts is expected to change the flow of some rainwater, so a stormwater pollution prevention plan is being reviewed as well.

According to an outline provided by Saucier, the entire project is expected to last through 2014.

Construction phases, which will include dam reconstruction and building the low-level outlet, are expected to run from 2011 to 2014.

The DEC is accepting public comment on the site preparation permits until Aug. 13. Comments are to be directed to Kent Sanders, NYSDEC Region 4 Stamford Sub-Office, 65561 State Route 10, Stamford, NY 12167 or to [email protected]

Categories: Schenectady County

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