Vincent Gray, Washington, D.C., mayor, announces plans for 3-phase project to

5:50 PM, Dec 7, 2012   |    comments
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA) -- District leaders broke ground on trying to stop the flooding problems at Bloomingdale and Le Droit Park, Northwest.

D.C. mayor Vincent Gray announced the plans for three phases of the project to be completed in the next decade.

The District will now refurbish two old tanks and tunnels at the McMillan sand filtration site and use them to store 6 million gallons of storm water when it rains. It's expected to be completed in 2014.
The site use to filter the District's drinking water.

In phase two, an additional six million gallons of combined water and sewage will flow through a Metro size tunnel under First Street. The completion date is scheduled for 2016.

And lastly, another big tunnel will be constructed under Rhode Island avenue. This will be completed three years earlier than expected in 2022 instead of 2025.

Russ Kinner has suffered through four major floodings this year. He hasn't stopped worrying.

"I know everyone was losing sleep over what was Hurricane Sandy going to mean to me."

The storm didn't cause any flooding in the neighborhood but he remembers the last time rains flooded his basement was the Sunday before Labor Day.

"That's when I started praying for the rain to stop. I thought I'd be swimming back to the stairs instead of walking. Now there is a season of hope."

The District has called the project 'the Northeast Boundary Neighborhood Protection Project' which is a section of the 2.6 billion dollar Clean Rivers Project.

But these additions and changes will add 40 million dollars to the overall cost.

The District hasn't figured out a way to pay for the additional cost yet but it will either through taxes or DC water rates.

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