STERLING, N.Y. — The state on Tuesday announced the completion of a $1.5 million flood-resiliency project in the town of Sterling in Cayuga County.
It was awarded through New York’s resiliency and economic-development initiative (REDI), the office of Gov. Kathy Hochul said.
The existing double culvert carrying McIntyre Road over Sterling Valley Creek was the only access route for local homes and agricultural properties north of Sterling Creek. Flooding in 2019 caused inundation of the culvert and erosion of the roadway embankment at both the inlet and the outlet of the culvert, leading to emergency repairs to avoid road closures, the governor’s office said.
To keep the roadway open, crews removed the existing double-barrel culvert and replaced it with a 71-foot single-span bridge. Workers installed stone fill in front of the abutments and along the wingwalls to protect the structure against future erosion. Improvements included in this project will ensure “uninterrupted” residential and emergency-vehicle passage.
“High waters have compromised critical infrastructure in the town of Sterling,” Scott Crawford, Sterling town supervisor, said. “The McIntyre Road project addresses the damage to the roadway, and the completed work will greatly benefit our community, ensuring the road will remain open and accessible to residents and emergency services. We look forward to our continued partnership with the state through the REDI program.”
New York officials created REDI to “increase the resilience” of shoreline communities and “bolster” economic development in the region. It was done in response to the “extended pattern of flooding” along the shores of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River, per the news release.
The state established five REDI regional planning committees to identify local priorities, at-risk infrastructure and other assets, and public safety concerns. The committees are comprised of representatives from eight counties: Niagara, Orleans, Monroe, Wayne, Cayuga, Oswego, Jefferson, and St. Lawrence.
The REDI Commission allocated $20 million for homeowner assistance, $30 million to improve the resiliency of businesses, and $15 million toward a regional dredging effort that will benefit each of the eight counties in the REDI regions. The remaining $235 million has been allocated towards local and regional projects that advance and exemplify the REDI mission.
Since the creation of the state’s REDI program in spring 2019, 134 REDI-funded local and regional projects are underway, including 88 projects in the design phase, 19 projects in the construction phase, and 27 projects completed, the governor’s office said.