Hazard Mitigation Plan Makes Numerous New Recommendations

Plan recommends ways for New London to prepare for natural disasters

A proposed update to New London’s hazard mitigation plan suggests that the city pursue numerous actions in anticipation of natural disaster threats to the city.

The proposal, which is going before the Public Works Committee tonight at 6 p.m. at City Hall, would update the current plan that was adopted in 2005. The recommendations were developed by Milone & McBroom Inc., a Cheshire-based consulting firm, with assistance from municipal employees in the Department of Public Works, Office of Development and Planning, and Building Department.

The stated goal of the five-year plan’s update is to “identify particular vulnerability to natural hazards and potential mitigation measures for such natural hazards in order to reduce the loss of or damage to life, property, infrastructure, and natural, cultural, and economic resources.”

If adopted, municipal officials would be instructed to pursue their relevant recommendations and an annual progress report would be made to the mayor and City Council by Oct. 1 of each year. The plan would be administered by the Department of Public Works under the authority of the mayor and council.

The plan gives priority to 67 new recommendations and 12 existing recommendations. New recommendations include:

  • Encourage municipal officials to attend trainings sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency
  • Consider a prohibition on development activities with potential storm surge areas identified by FEMA
  • Ensure that development at Fort Trumbull is “resilient to flooding, hurricane surges, and sea level rise”
  • Ensure that the emergency operations plan provides up-to-date and detailed instructions on the timing of evacuations
  • Replace sand and vegetation at affected beaches to keep up with erosion
  • Develop contingency plans for areas that are hard to reach during winter storms
  • Consider elevating portions of Pequot Ave. and other coastal roads to keep ahead of rising sea levels
  • Upgrade stormwater collection and discharge system to keep up with rising sea levels

Existing recommendations given continued priority in the revised plan include improvements to the Shaw’s Cove pumping system to improve flood control, drainage improvements to Pequot Ave. near Greens Harbor Beach, requiring utilities to be installed underground for all new development, and reviewing and updating the city’s emergency operations plan at least once a year.

The plan also provides an analysis of the city’s emergency resources as well as vulnerabilities to inland flooding and coastal flooding, hurricanes and tropical storms, winter storms, summer storms, earthquakes, and wildfires.

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Thomas Cornick January 14, 2013 at 07:22 PM
Unfortunately upgrading any system stormwater included will fail when maintenance is lacking which is where we are right now due to a lack of funds and manpower. Identifying choke points in the drainage and seeing if just that area repaired is good enough may buy us time to plan, pay,and execute a longer lasting solution. None of this is inexpensive unless you dollar cost average systems that the WPA built 80 years ago that still serve us even when we failed to upgrade for the acres of impermiable surfaces of roof and pavement or keep up with maintenance and repair.
katherine January 14, 2013 at 07:59 PM
What a discussing humiliating site. What wrong with this picture?? How about taking some pride in where we live, QUIT WAITING FOR THE OTHER PERSON TO BEGIN THE JOB. There are plenty of homeless,beggers,& people who want to work. What better place to start? Thank you for listening
Clark van der Lyke January 14, 2013 at 08:16 PM
I am for elevating the whole city. Pequot Avenue is not much above sea level until you get into the 900's and the seawall. The water topped the seawall and that does not bode well for the rest of Pequot Avenue. There are more ways than taxes to pay for a water view.
Thomas Cornick January 14, 2013 at 08:41 PM
As long as the prevailing authorities accept the explanation that the ocean is in the wrong place for political ease then Pequot sinks. Once the bad news that the structures are too close to the edge sinks in perhaps progress but not in our lifetimes given human nature.
Wayne Vendetto January 15, 2013 at 12:39 PM
Katherine, That is a picture of storm debris from Hurricane Sandy. It was cleaned up within two days by our Public Works Dept.


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