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North Nashua River Local Protection Project

North Nashua River, FitchburgThe North Nashua River Local Protection Project is located on the North Nashua River in Fitchburg. The project safeguards 50 acres of industrial, commercial, and residential property in Fitchburg. Along with other flood damage reduction projects in the river basin, the North Nashua River Local Protection Project protects 2,800 acres of highly-valued property.

Work along a 4.4-mile reach of the North Nashua River in Fitchburg was originally completed in 1937, when Works Progress Administration funds were used to enlarge and realign the channel, remove abandoned dams, and construct concrete walls and stone slope protection. Emergency repairs were made to this work following the disastrous floods of 1955. Although this work included removing debris in the channel and restoring the riverbanks, it was considered temporary. The project eventually deteriorated until it was no longer able to fulfill its design function. Work on rebuilding the project to its original capacity started in July 1979 and was completed in May 1981, costing $3.2 million. It is operated and maintained by Fitchburg.

The rebuilt project included clearing and deepening the North Nashua River channel, removing two bridge piers and the partially washed out Syphon Dam, and rehabilitating the slopes, riverbanks, and existing floodwalls. The work covers a five-mile stretch of the river.