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Final stages of Techny Drain project to start this month

Work on the final stages of one of Northbrook’s largest flood relief projects is scheduled to begin later this month.

The Techny Drain Project is a major component of the village’s community-wide flood reduction plan. When completed, the project is expected  to help alleviate storm water drainage problems across a vast swath of southern Northbrook, said Village Engineer Paul Kendzior.

While the first two phases of the measure occurred in 2003 and 2006, the latest stages are intended to tie together all the previous work, Kendzior said.

Beginning about May 21, crews will install a relief sewer beneath Techny Road from Pfingsten Road to Second Street and another relief sewer under Pfingsten Road between Techny Road and Canterbury Drive.

Kendzior explained the relief sewers would capture storm water that typically flows into the south fork of the Techny Drain and causes overbank flooding. The sewers will then discharge it back into the Techny Drain farther downstream.

“It’s quite a big watershed,” Kendzior said.

Residents of south Northbrook have been anticipating the completion of the Techny Drain Project for years. When the Village Board approved funding for the project with its budget in April, people applauded the measure.

Residents of the area told the board about the troubles they have had with flooding on their properties over the years. Barbara Gutboard, who lives on Canterbury Drive, said she supported the village’s efforts to alleviate flooding.

“I’ve been dealing with this for a long time,” she told the board in April.

The complexity of the Techny Drain Project has contributed to the extended timeline, Kendzior said. Northbrook is conducting phases three and four in conjunction with the Cook County Highway Department.

When installed, the relief sewers will impact Techny Road, Kendzior said. That’s why road reconstruction will be done in tandem with the drainage project.

“With its size and depth, there isn’t much left of the road way when you’re finished,” Kendzior said.

The village and highway department will share the cost of the $5.3 million project, with the village contributing about $2.4 million, he said.

Also in April, the Village Board established a storm water fee for residents that would help repay bonds issued to fund flood relief projects.

Once the project is completed, the village will be able to measure the impact it has on the surrounding areas. Because of the complexity, the village has not yet monitored the effects on flooding, Kendzior said.

But, he added, the situation would “obviously improve.”

The project is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2013.

During construction, much of Techny Road between Second Street and Pfingsten Road will only be open to westbound traffic. Two-way traffic will be permitted between Second Street and Shermer Road to reduce the impact to Glenbrook North High School, according to a village announcement.

For more information on Techny Road traffic patterns, go to www.northbrook.il.us. To monitor construction progress, go to www.technyroadimprovements.blogspot.com.

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