By Bob Uphues
Brookfield officials say that all of the work related to the Washington Avenue/Forest Avenue pump station and storm water detention project should be done by June 1, but that the pump station should be operational before then.
Derek Treichel, the village's engineer, said that the electricity cabinet and generator for the pump station, which is located north of Washington Avenue just west of Salt Creek, have been installed.
In the next two weeks, ComEd is expected to run service to the cabinet and within a month Nicor will run a gas line to the generator. Once that work is complete, said Treichel, the village will conduct tests for one to two weeks to work out any bugs. After that the pump station will be operational.
However, there will be some work to complete before the project is completely wrapped up.
Workers will need to complete the grading of the above-ground storm water detention facility in the 3500 block of Forest Avenue. In addition, according to Village Manager Keith Sbiral, a permanent wrought-iron fence is scheduled to be erected May 1, replacing the orange snow fence that's been the source of some complaints from residents.
Sections of the fence have at times fallen over, creating gaps. The snow fence, residents have complained, is not a sufficient barrier to keep curious kids from the pit, which has quite steep sides and is about eight feet deep.
High winds blew down the fence on March 8, and the contractor has since reinforced it with metal poles. Sbiral said the village may seek to replace the snow fence with a chain link fence until the permanent one is installed.
Sbiral in an email responding to a resident complaint on March 9 expressed irritation with the fence problems, saying the subject had been addressed with the contractor and managing engineer "many times."
"Your frustration with this is shared by me," Sbiral wrote in his email to the resident.
In mid-April work is also expected to begin at the intersection of Washington and Prairie avenues to extend the storm sewer line from Prairie Avenue east to the drainage structures connecting to the pump station system.
That work should take less than a week to complete, Treichel said, but will cause some disruption to traffic at the intersection during daytime hours. Treichel said he hoped flaggers could be onsite to direct traffic through the intersection and avoid closing it during the construction.
The final touches will include some sidewalk replacement, laying sod on the parkways and final landscaping work.
"Conservatively, we're saying June 1 to get all the work completed," Treichel said.
Work began on the $2 million pump station late last summer and should mitigate basement flooding that homeowners have experienced during heavy rain events. The Washington/Prairie/Forest neighborhood was particularly hard hit by floods in 2008, 2010 and 2013.
About $1 million of the cost of construction is being funded by the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District, with the village paying for the balance. Construction started in August 2016, following an application and plan review process that took about two years to complete.