By James Niedzinskijniedzinski@derrynews.com
---- — LONDONDERRY — In the past when heavy rainstorms rolled into town, some residents had to resort to boating through their neighborhood.
For decades, flooding has affected residents living near Beaver Brook; inches of water poured into basements located all over Gilcreast Road and Brookview Drive.
But residents may now have a chance to dry out as the Army Corps of Engineers hopes to stop the water spilling out of Beaver Brook and Little Cohas Brook.
Engineers and and officials last visited in March to examine both brooks and their tributaries.
Town officials have been working with the Army Corps of Engineers since 2010, when the Town Council unanimously voted to accept FEMA funds and help from the Corps.
Since then, Corps engineers have been conducting studies and devising ways to divert the brooks when they do overflow, and outline the areas most susceptible to flooding.
The Corps will present its findings to town officials and make a recommendation. It will be up to the Town Council to decide what to do about flood plain management.
“We have found flooding seems to start near Rockingham and Mammoth Roads, and pushes through into other tributaries and neighborhoods,” said Robert Russo, New England project manager for the Army Corps.
Additional storm drains and box culverts have been considered to help divert the brook away from residential areas. However, one solution may lead to more problems in the future.
Although the areas near Stokes and Rockingham Roads prove ideal for box culverts and storm drains, diverting a brook one way or another may flood wooded areas and marshlands, Russo said.
“The goal of the project is to remove the possibility of flooded areas while minimizing the affects of redirection,” hydraulic engineer Patrick Blumeris said.
Corps members will continue meeting this month to discuss the best way of dealing with the brooks, and are expected to meet with the Town Council in October.