April 27, 2012
- City-State Groundwater Working Group - The Working Group met this week. Individual reports are summarized below.
- MBTA - The T and their consultant GZA have completed inspections for leaks in the Orange Line tunnel and are close to completing their inspections of the Green and Blue Lines. None of the inspections have revealed significant leaks yet. They are to conduct testing to confirm direction and rates of flow in drain lines to the pump stations that serve the Southwest Corridor and plan to shut off the recharge pumps in the South End near Back Bay Station for 30 days to determine the effect of no makeup flow; this will reduce groundwater levels in those areas likely by a significant amount, but the limited duration should prevent any piling damage. The T plans to put additional information about the groundwater level remediation project on its website. There will likely be a meeting for elected officials and key stakeholders in the early fall followed by a larger public meeting later in the year to present findings and plans going forward.
- BWSC - BWSC is once again recharging water from the hydrant on Dartmouth Street near Beacon Street in the Back Bay and plans to continue until they begin the relining project. Project start has slipped to June, but BWSC is looking for ways to move that back up. The relining at Commercial and Richmond Street in the North End has slipped slightly because the pipe has been determined to need a grease cleanout in order for the lining to adhere properly; this should be under way very shortly. The reconstruction of the sewer line on Blagdon Street behind the Boston Public Library has slipped to September; again, BWSC is looking for ways to speed this project back up.
- MassDOT - MassDOT completed repairs to the drain line from the Turnpike, repairing 10 leaks. We found significantly higher groundwater levels in the Bay Village area just north of the Turnpike when we read them just after repairs in that area were completed; although they dropped somewhat last month, we are hopeful that the combination of the repairs and the recent rain will lead to further level increases.
- East Boston - We have seen some significant drop back in the increased levels in parts of the Paris Flats section of East Boston, although levels are still generally well above those seen before the MWRA repairs. The geography seems to be a little different than what we had seen previously, and we are trying to determine a potential cause.
- GCOD - Compliance with GCOD continues to be excellent, thanks to the efforts of ISD, BWSC, the BRA, and the Board of Appeals. At least 148 recharge systems are in, have been inspected by BWSC, and are operating.
- Website - Traffic to the website continues at high levels. We continue to get compliments on the usefulness of the information posted.
- Meetings - Christian and I attended a meeting of the Citys long range hazard mitigation task force, as well as one with DPW on potential infiltration in a Back Bay sidewalk repair project. Im scheduled to speak before the Commonwealth School and the Pilot Block Neighborhood Association at meetings in May.