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Drainage Issues Persist On New Castle's Old Roaring Brook Road

CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. – Old Roaring Brook Road is once again at the forefront of the Department of Public Works’ agenda.

Public Works Commissioner Anthony Vaccaro said the half-mile dirt-road section between Hoffman Road and Lawrence Farms Crossway has significant drainage issues that need to be resolved. He said the road can become flooded and damaged with every major storm.

“This road was never built with any formal specifications,” Vacarro said at Tuesday night’s New Castle Town Board meeting. “So it’s a very little road, very windy road, bumpy road. It has significant site constraints.”

Vacarro said the issue was first brought to the board in 2010, which conceptually approved a $250,000 paving project. The project never came to fruition, though, as it needed approval from the New York City Department of Environmental Protection.

“Basically this entire road section is in the New York City DEP water protection area,” Vaccaro said. “At that time the town took a step back and really wanted to understand these DEP issues and see where we can go with that.”

Since then, Vaccaro held a public meeting and learned that many residents were against paving the road. Residents were concerned about an increase in traffic, speed and accidents, and a loss of aesthetic value.

“We have people who want it paved and are tired of potholes and conditions of the road, but we also have a strong contingent of people who want to maintain the characteristics of the road,” Vacarro said.

Vaccaro, however, said the drainage needs to be fixed whether paving is done or not. He believes that improving the drainage but leaving the aesthetics alone would be a win-win for everyone.

He said the project has been submitted for review by the Croton Kensico Watershed Intermunicipal Coalition, which Vaccaro hopes will help fund the project. In the meantime, Vaccaro and his crew have been carrying out smaller jobs to improve the drainage, and he said progress is being made.

“We’re going in the right direction; we’re not there yet,” Vaccaro said.

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