Denville Downtown to Undergo Flood Risk Mitigation Redesign


Comprehensive Flood Risk Management Measures to Bolster the Township's Flood-Prone Downtown Business District.

MORRISTOWN, NJ – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York District (USACE), in partnership with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) and the Township of Denville, are charting a proactive course to combat persistent riverine flooding issues originating from the Rockaway River and Den Brook in Denville's downtown business district. The announcement stems from the release of a draft Integrated Feasibility Report and Environmental Assessment.

US Army Corp of Engineers – Denville Flood Study and Report

Key Points of the Plan:

  1. Focus on Most Vulnerable Structures: The primary plan entails nonstructural measures on 38 structures in three clusters, spotlighting the downtown business district with the gravest flood risks.
  2. Elevation and Floodproofing Measures: 30 structures (28 residential and 2 non-residential) will be elevated to a height one-foot above the 1% annual exceedance probability (AEP) water surface level. Moreover, 8 structures (2 residential and 6 non-residential) will undergo floodproofing, which includes protective measures such as flood shields, floodproof sealants, skimmer pumps, and more. The exact measures for each structure will be finalized in the design phase.
  3. Stakeholder Involvement: Eligible homeowners and building owners will be contacted by USACE and the Township of Denville to discuss the nonstructural measures, conditions for participation, and any potential temporary relocation during the construction phase.
  4. Voluntary Participation: All building owners are given a choice, allowing them to opt out of the flood risk management measures.
  5. Cost Sharing: The project's cost is shared, with the Federal Government shouldering 65% and its non-Federal partners, including NJDEP and the Township of Denville, bearing 35%.
  6. Maintenance Responsibilities: Once the measures are implemented, building owners are expected to retain certain responsibilities for their upkeep.
US Army Corp of Engineers – Denville Flood Study and Report

Deep Dive into the Study:

Commissioned under the Continuing Authorities Program (CAP) Section 205 Flood Risk Management Study, the initiative's purpose is to explore feasible flood risk management solutions. The comprehensive study encompassed a myriad of potential remedies, from building floodwalls and levees to rerouting river flows. After extensive analysis, nonstructural measures emerged as the recommended plan.

The feasibility phase spanned from 2018 to 2023. Next steps involve the design phase from 2024 to 2026, followed by the construction phase set to be executed between 2026 to 2028.

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