The city of Fairfield will eventually have storm sewer improvements made at Muskopf and Rita Mae drives, but first the city will contract with Strand for engineering services storm sewer improvements design. MICHAEL D. PITMAN/STAFF
Photo: Michael D. Pitman
Photo: Michael D. Pitman

After years of development, this Fairfield neighborhood needs up to $1M in storm sewer fixes

The project’s timing will be determined by the availability of state funds.

“It is recommended that this be engineered this year to allow for budgeting of this work in the future Capital Improvement Program, and for potential state funding, should the funding become available,” said Fairfield Engineer Ben Mann.

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City Council last month approved a $70,000 contract with Strand Associates Inc. for engineering services, and approved a $10,000 contract with Stantec for geotechnical services under the existing city contract. The cost will be determined later, but officials estimate it will be between $750,000 and $1 million.

Mann said Strand will complete the final design and cost estimates for the improvement to the storm sewer and detention pond in the area. The project includes surveying the area, and to review and revise as necessary conceptual alternatives from the 2015 study and develop the preferred alternative with assistance from Fairfield staff.

Residential development over the past several decades has occurred in the Muskopf Road area, which is northwest of Harbin Park and its mountain bike trails. Areas along Lake Michigan and Rita Mae drives were constructed west of Muskopf Road in the mid-to-late-1990s, and areas along Muskopf Drive, Sherry Lane, and Rite Mae Drive were constructed to the east of Muskopf Road starting in 2005.

The residential development topography in that area of the city “is extremely flat,” but was was constructed next to a steep hillside, Mann said.

“Several ravines convey storm water runoff from upstream residential areas and from the hillside before discharging into the storm sewer system along Muskopf Road,” he said.

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When rain is heavy, a significant volume of storm water runoff is generated, and the corresponding sediment and debris also collects. Mann said because of that, some local streets experience flooding during heavy rainfall periods “which results in the deposition of sediment on the roadway pavement.”

Residents have complained to the city about the sediment, and Mann said it’s labor-intensive for city staff to remove from the streets.

Strand will design alternatives to re-route the sediment away from the roadway, and improve local storm water management.

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Here is the area affected by occasional flooding during heavy rainfall in the western portion of Fairfield:

• Lake Michigan Drive

• Rita Mae Drive

• Muskopf Road

• Muskopf Drive

• Muskopf Court

• Sherry Drive

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