GUILDERLAND, NY (NEWS 10) – Local lawmakers announced the town of Guilderland will receive over $2 million to fix flooding near Stuyvesant Plaza.
Western Avenue outside the Stuyvesant shopping plaza has been subject to flooding when it rains for years.
“When it rains, it’s 850 acres coming at one culvert pipe under Western Avenue,” Delaware Engineering Project Manager Fred Grober said.
Though the flooding is notorious, money wasn’t available to fix the issue.
“We wrapped our arms around it five years ago and said, ‘Here’s what we need to do to fix it,’” Grober said. “However, obviously, the town has said, ‘We don’t have that kind of cash flow.’”
On Thursday, Assemblywoman Patricia Fahy and Senator George Amedore announced the town received a $2.75 million capital grant to fix the 50-year problem.
The announcement thrilled neighbors and business owners.
“It’s not only affected Hippo’s, it’s affected everyone in Stuyvesant Plaza,” Hippo’s owner Tony Hazapis said. “I’m very excited that they’ve decided, finally, to go after a real fix.”
“I’m hopeful the money that they spend goes to good use, and it works, and I can drive down Western Avenue as opposed to paddle my canoe,” resident Eric Simonsen said.
“It is important that we once and for all begin to resolve a long standing problem,” Fahy said.
“It will have a huge improvement and big difference when the project is completed,” Amedore said.
Groundbreaking is slated for 2017, but work will be done before then. Once construction begins, the project is expected to take between 18 and 20 months.