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Flood mitigation is a continued effort that encompasses a spectrum of short- and long-term initiatives including major stormwater system construction projects, annual construction to repair and improve the sewer system, maintenance activities such as slip-lining, cleaning, televising, catch basin clearing, street sweeping, and the conduct of engineering studies that serve to identify where targeted investments will have the greatest impact on mitigating floods, as well as policies and regulations aimed at reducing flooding over time.
The South Basin/50th Street conveyance system has been designed to provide the greatest amount of flooding relief to the residents south of 47th Street in La Grange. It stands to improve stormwater drainage in six depressional areas which span west to east across the Village. The project represents a significant infrastructure investment for areas located south of 47th street.
This area, referred to as the North Basin, is the subject of a comprehensive study being conducted by Christopher Burke Engineering. The study will serve to update modeling for drainage in this area, ultimately contributing to a prioritized list of projects that will serve to improve the occurrence of flooding in this area.
More recently, construction has been delayed due to litigation with Hanson Quarry in McCook. Recent rulings by the Chancery Court have allowed the Village to proceed with preparing documents for bidding the project. The Village will also work with its partner, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (a regional entity that provides stormwater management), to arrive at an agreement (referred to as an Intergovernmental Agreement) for the funding to support the project.
Engineering plans for the South Basin/50th Street relief sewer are contingent upon several factors which are part of the iterative process of developing bid documents. The current timeline for having a biddable package that can be issued for construction companies to bid on the work is April 2024.
The North Basin Study is underway with modeling and data collection taking place through October. Preliminary results are anticipated by December, and a finalized study is anticipated in January 2024.
Engineering plans and studies include data collection, modeling, and iterative steps of design, modeling, and redesign prior to the development of initial and final proposals. Studies are performed by Civil Engineers with specialized training. The scope and complexity of conveyance design dictates the time required to prepare proposals. The conduct of this work involves the consideration and review of many design aspects, with the ultimate design reflecting the best solution for realizing the project’s objectives.
There are several resources listed on the Village’s Storm Preparation and Response webpage including how to clean your home and ways in which you might mitigate flooding in the future. If you’ve experienced a sewer backup, you may want to consider the Village’s residential Sewer Backup Prevention Grant Program.
New construction is managed closely, as the addition of new impervious surface can increase the water flowing into sewer systems. La Grange has very restrictive drainage and stormwater management requirements that go above and beyond what is required by the MWRD for all municipalities within their jurisdiction. Residential site development standards require grading improvements and below ground, on-site retention facilities (dissipation systems) for new single-family homes.
As a result of these requirements, new construction sites improve stormwater management as compared to properties developed without these requirements. Once constructed, these properties provide storage equivalent to one inch of rainfall over 45% of lot coverage and groundwater displaced by building foundations.
Videos and images can be submitted using the Flooding Event Report Form. Additionally, the Village maintains a webpage dedicated storm preparation and response which may contain helpful information.