SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Wednesday’s stormy weather set the perfect scene for a public meeting about stormwater and flooding issues in a Lackawanna County community.
Wednesday was the first step in what officials are calling a long process to fix the drainage problems plaguing residents in the East Mountain section of Scranton.
Dozens of residents gathered to voice their concerns about stormwater and flooding issues happening in the East Mountain section of Scranton.
Similar sentiments echoed throughout Howard Gardner Charter School, which was the site of Wednesday’s community meeting.
It was hosted by city officials and representatives from HRG engineering firm, who was awarded the contract earlier this year to conduct a study and come up with possible solutions.
“This is a giant jigsaw puzzle and we’re just opening the box and seeing all the pieces so we need your help explaining the pieces, flipping them all over, get the edges put together. We’re here to work with you guys to try and solve some of the problems you’ve had up here for decades,” said Senior Project Manager George White.
In May, city council approved Scranton’s American Rescue Plan Act Spending Plan that included more than $20 million for projects dealing with stormwater and infrastructure problems.
“There’s more work than we can possibly do so we’re trying to acquire as much funding as we can so we can address the biggest problems that we have in the city,” said Eileen Cipriani, the Executive Director of the Office of Community Development for the City of Scranton.
Kyle Evans says it’s so bad, his basement floods during moderate rainfall.
“We’ve had to replace the furnace, hot water heater, just loss of property, loss of possessions, and tens of thousands of dollars and it’s just a constant battle,” said Evans.
And when it pours, Amanda Conti has to clear debris from the drains on her street to prevent flooding.
“My neighbors can’t get into their driveways, I can’t get into my driveway, it’s just puddles and puddles of water,” said Conti.
The project is expected to be completed in phases but there is no set timeline.
East Mountain residents who could not attend the meeting are encouraged to submit information about the stormwater and flooding problems they’re facing.