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Public Opinion Sought In Meadowlands-Area Flood Prevention Project

A HUD competition seeks to prevent future flooding in lower Bergen County.
A HUD competition seeks to prevent future flooding in lower Bergen County. Photo Credit: Wikipedia

LITTLE FERRY, N.J. — A public hearing will be held on Tuesday, Sept. 29 for a project the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection is submitting in a national competition for $1 billion in federal funding to help alleviate flooding in the Meadowlands area.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) developed a multi-phase Natural Disaster Resilience Competition to support innovative resilience projects in areas struck by natural disasters in recent years, such as Superstorm Sandy.

“Phase one was risk assessment, where we set up an argument that New Jersey is deserving of funds to deal with storm surges and flooding along the coast and along our river systems,” said Kerry Pflugh, Manager of Constituent Services for NJDEP.

Selected to compete in phase two against 40 others, the NJDEP narrowed down their application to the Meadowlands region — specifically in and around the municipalities of Carlstadt, East Rutherford, Hackensack, Hasbrouck Heights, Little Ferry, Moonachie, Rutherford, South Hackensack, Teterboro, and Wood-Ridge.

New Jersey’s project concept is three-pronged.

“It’s conceptual at this point, but we are conceding there will be a wall and tide gates that would be in place in areas where they can close off any of them when we know a storm is coming to try and prevent any significant and damaging flooding,” Pflugh said.

The second part consists of documenting the process to be utilized by other communities planning for resilience.

The third aspect is a grant program, available for the public to apply for.

Locals will have the opportunity to comment on the proposed project at the hearing or by email and mail through Oct. 9 at 5 p.m. All comments will be included in the application.

After the deadline, it will be four months before a decision is made.

The hearing will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Little Ferry Borough Hall, 215-217 Liberty Street, Little Ferry. CLICK HERE to RSVP.

MORE INFORMATION: ndrcpubliccomments@dep.nj.gov OR: Office of Flood Risk Reduction Measures, Attention: Dave Rosenblatt, 501 East State Street, Mail Code 501-01A, P.O. Box 420, Trenton, NJ 08625-0420 or www.nj.gov/dep/floodhazard .

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