Takes DOT to task over Route 7 flooding

To the Editor:

About ten years ago, I, along with Dave Hubbard, Gerry Monaghan and Roger Pratt, met in the bowels of the New Milford Town Hall as the town's Route 7 Advisory Committee.

I believe we met for more than a year trying to assist the state in its coming plan to build the new Route 7.

Our goal was to suggest such things as where to track the new road so as to have the least destructive impact upon the town, try to make the road as attractive as possible, and ease the flow of traffic during the construction stages.

Generally, I think we accomplished much and probably saved the state considerable money by reducing the original "takings" from 33 properties to less than 10.

One area we failed in was convincing the state DOT there was a flooding problem from the bridge south almost to McDonald's.

I still remember that discussion with their engineers at their posh headquarters in Newington when we asked them what they intended to do about the frequent flooding in that area.

Their response was amazing.

They had no idea there was any problem at all in that area, and that following years of study and research.

We suggested they raise the elevation of the road in the area about 18 inches, a height not so severe as to hurt businesses on the west side of the road but high enough to allow passage of cars, school buses and fire trucks, etc. during times of moderate flooding.

They said they would look into the problem.

Well, we can all see how seriously they took our suggestion and now, after having spent millions, the town still gets cut in half every time the river rises.

One can only wonder who is in charge over there and shake our heads at the lavish "solution" to the Route 202, Route 67, Bridge Street intersection.

I wonder what the final bill on that one came to be.

I also ask the questions, are we any safer than before and is the upper section of Route 7 any better than before?

Charles Raymond