NORWALK — Nearly a year after Hurricane Ida brought a historic amount of rainfall to the state, city residents are still grappling with the storm’s damage as a portion of the Five Mile River requires a new retaining wall.
The Conservation Commission approved a request Tuesday submitted by a group of three Rowayton Avenue homeowners to rebuild a retaining wall along the backs of the homes, along the shore of the Five Mile River, according to city documents.
The existing retaining wall was damaged in early September last year when a large tree came down due to wind during Hurricane Ida, which brought a historic 7.5 inches of rainfall in one storm to Norwalk.
Ida also caused a portion of the South Norwalk UPS Customer Center facility’s roof to collapse, a city spokesperson said at the time. The storm also created thousands of dollars in damage to a hand-painted mural at Calf Pasture Beach.
More than 40 incidents were reported to the city during the storm, mostly of flooding in roadways, along with several fallen trees and tree limbs.
Among the downed trees was a several decades-old one in the backyard of a Rowayton Avenue property, which is among three homes seeking a permit to repair the retaining wall, project engineer Joe Canas of engineering firm Tighe & Bond said during a recent commission meeting.
“The overall project, we will restore the wall across all three properties to pre-storm walls and grades, so we are not making the wall any higher,” Canas said. “We are not making the wall any shorter.”
While the three properties were submitted as separate applications, the projects were taken into consideration as a unit, and will be completed together under the same engineering and construction firms, Canas said.
The section of wall requiring repairs extends about 85 feet along the three properties, Canas said. A sandbag cofferdam about 3.5 feet high will be installed along the length of the repaired wall, with a 24-inch pipe to allow more flow capacity for the Five Mile River, Canas said.
“This is the time of year to do work on the river, when the water is low, conditions are dry. Late summer is best time to do it,” Canas said.
There will be no increase in fill added to the retaining wall, beyond replacing what was washed away or lost during the storm and succeeding months, Canas said.