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Corps prepares draft environmental assessment on Hartford MDC proposal to build deep rock tunnel under Hartford LPP

Published Sept. 2, 2015

CONCORD, Mass. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District, has prepared a Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) and Finding of No Significant Impact, and is reviewing plans under 33 USC 408 (Section 408) to allow for the construction of a deep rock tunnel approximately 170 feet below ground of the Corps-constructed flood risk management project (Hartford Local Protection Project) by the Hartford Metropolitan District Commission in Hartford, Conn.


A Notice of Availability is being issued pursuant to the Council on Environmental Quality regulations for implementing the procedural provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and Corps regulation. Section 408 allows the Corps to grant permission for the alteration or occupation or use of a Corps civil works project if it determined that the activity will not be injurious to the public interest and will not impair the usefulness of the Federal project. A decision on a Section 408 request is a federal action, and therefore subject to NEPA and other environmental compliance requirements.


The Proposed Action under Corps review involves the tunneling beneath several components of the existing Corps-constructed Hartford Local Protection Project associated with the construction of a deep rock tunnel for the Hartford Metropolitan District Commission’s (MDC) South Hartford Conveyance and Storage Tunnel, Consolidation Conduits and Pump Station Project. The components that are within range of the tunnel alignment and are evaluated in the EA include: the 1) South Meadows Pump Station and the Folly Brook Conduit; 2) immediately adjacent to the Clark Dike; and 3) within 200 feet of the Folly Brook Dike. The city of Hartford is the owner and operator of the Hartford LPP.  


USACE has made a preliminary determination that the proposed action will have no significant direct, indirect or cumulative environmental impacts to the Federally-constructed project; and an Environmental Impact Statement for the action is not required under the provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. This determination will be reviewed in light of the facts submitted in response to this notice.


To request a copy of the Draft Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact contact: Kirk Bargerhuff, biologist, New England District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 696 Virginia Road, Concord, MA 01742-2751, or by email to kirk.e.bargerhuff@usace.army.mil. Public comments on this proposal can be submitted by Oct. 1, 2015 to the above address to the attention of Mr. Bargerhuff. Letters should be postmarked by this date. 

Tim Dugan

Release no. 2015-076