Improvements to the open stream channel and removal of years of sediment have tamed the Sing Sing Creek, which flows under the Metro-North Railroad tracks in Ossining, N.Y., and empties into the Hudson River.
In an effort to mitigate potential floods, a 100-foot-long section of stream was lined with a thick concrete channel bottom to improve water flow and facilitate future maintenance.
The creek drains a watershed area of nearly five square miles and when it rains heavily, it often flowed across the tracks just north of the station, flooding them and the station parking lot.
“We can’t say the tracks will never be flooded again, but as a result of this project, we expect floods here to be few and far between,” said Metro-North President Howard Permut. “We must continue to harden our system against extreme weather events.”
Approximately 1,500 cubic yards of deposited sediments and assorted debris were removed from the streambed below the tracks, as well as from village-owned culverts beneath the parking lot and the open stream between the parking lot culverts and Water Street.
The work began in April and was completed on time by Eastern Excavation Inc. for $1.4 million as part of Metro-North’s 2010-2014 Capital Program. The village contributed $116,000, with help from Assemblywoman Sandra Galef, who secured $80,000 in capital reserve funding toward the village portion.
“I am so pleased that the village of Ossining was able to partner with Metro-North on these much needed improvements. I am hopeful that the strengthening and repairs that were performed will be immediately noticeable in mitigating the impact of the floods during inevitable future storms so that commuters and residents alike will not be inconvenienced by disruptions in rail service or parking accessibility,” said Assemblywoman Sandy Galef.
In other Metro-North news, Permut appointed John Kesich to senior vice president operations. Kesich has been acting in that capacity since May.
Kesich has spent almost a quarter-century at Metro-North, most recently as assistant vice president chief mechanical officer (CMO). As CMO, he was responsible for providing direction and leadership to the department’s 1,300 employees, ensuring that Metro-North’s railcars and locomotives are inspected, cleaned, maintained and repaired safely and with excellent customer service in mind.
“John has done an excellent job managing difficult challenges and has always shown a keen understanding of the importance of safety for our customers and employees,” Permut said. “He has proven his strong leadership to the Metro-North team to address these problems expeditiously.”
As senior vice president operations, Kesich will lead efforts in attaining the overall safety goals and objectives of his division by promoting safe work practices. He will also oversee efforts to advance customer service priorities such as on-time performance and efficiency.