HOBOKEN – The North Hudson Sewerage Authority, which is currently building a wet weather pump in downtown Hoboken, moved one step closer to addressing flooding in the southwestern area of the city on May 21 when contractors lowered two wet weather pumps into an underground chamber along Observer Highway.
The wet weather pump station project is being paid for entirely by the NHSA, which oversees the North Hudson County wastewater system, but a grant for $5 million under the American Resource Recovery Act (ARRA) covered some of the approximate $18 million cost.
“There’s a lot of misunderstanding about the causes of flooding in Hoboken,” said Authority Executive Director Frederic Pocci in a statement. “Flooding into the streets essentially occurs when there is an intense rain event at the same time that the Hudson River is at high tide. Much of Hoboken is below sea level, as measured by the average high tide, so when rain water travels through the combined sewer lines to the Hudson and meets the high tide head‐on, it backs up into the streets. The flooding has nothing to do with the size of the sewer lines or the catch basins, which are now in good condition and have been regularly maintained by the Authority for years.”
The new wet weather pump station is designed to handle flows generated by what meteorologists refer to as “a five year rain event.” This is a rainfall intensity of up to 1.3 inches an hour, with a total of 4.2 inches for the entire event, according to a press release.
“We expect to have the pump station on line and operative before the end of the year, if everything continues to go well,” said Dr. Richard Wolff, authority chairman.
The pump will be underground, and the only visible portion of the new system will be an electrical building. The pump is located on Observer Highway near Hudson Street, close to the New Jersey Transit terminal.
For a previous story about the pumps and the NHSA, click HERE. -- Ray Smith