Queens Residents Want Solutions For Flooding Problems
Some Queens homeowners say they are constantly battling high waters like the flood waters they had to deal with during a rain storm last week. NY1's Ruschell Boone filed the following report.
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The flood waters are long gone except for a small section of Utopia Parkway, where ponding often happens. David Ayala said he's constantly draining the street water because it pools here when it rains.
Ayala got rid of the water during Friday's rain to prevent it from spilling down the driveway and into his neighbor's driveway or his apartment, where's he's still cleaning up from last week's flood. Ayala's frustration is mounting after only a month of living here.
Other residents are fed up with this constant problem.
"It's been like this for as long as I can remember and I've lived here for 11 years," said one.
"It's been going on since 2002 and, as you can see, it's been getting worse and worse and worse," said another.
Some homeowners believe the pooling is caused by the slope in the street and sinking sidewalks. They said they tried for years to get the city's Environmental Protection and Transportation Departments to fix the problem.
"It's like a political football," said one resident. "DEP refers it to the Department of Transportation. The Department of Transportation refers it to DEP."
Adding to the frustration, residents said it's also hard to get a straight answer on what the city is doing to fix the neighborhood's overall flooding issues.
NY1 reached out to the DEP on their behalf. DEP officials said they are looking into the ponding problem and they are currently working on a plan to address the constant flooding.
The agency discussed several options with Councilman James Gennaro, who also chairs the Environmental Protection Committee. Gennaro said the DEP is looking at several options, including diverting some of the sewer flow to other areas.
"None of them are simple," Gennaro said. "They are all going to be a lot of money but something absolutely has to be done."