The State Highway Administration (SHA) has been working on a stormwater management project at the intersection of MD 32, Cedar Lane, and Grace Drive for at least 6 months. This project (#AX-7665282R) is part of a larger SHA project occurring at multiple locations. The purpose of the project is to fulfill the goals of the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Program as part of the restoration efforts for the Chesapeake Bay watershed. The local portion of the project includes the enlargement of the pre-existing stormwater management pond and the removal of many trees and a significant amount of dirt. SHA initially expected the construction of this new facility to take two months. However, issues arose during construction and it is currently on hold.
SHA’s contractor ran into solid rock as they began to excavate and expand the original stormwater management facility. This was unanticipated. Based on the borings taken when the construction plan was developed, they expected the underlying rock to be softer, with more sand, enabling easier removal. When the contractor began to hit the rock during construction, they tried to dig through it, creating the tall pile of large boulders now visible on site. However, this approach was unsuccessful, and the project was placed on hold until a revised storm-water management design can be developed.
In the meantime, SHA’s contractors have taken measures to limit further degradation of the site and maintain the quality of the water running off the site and into the Middle Patuxent River. Per Roy Fletcher, SHA’s Construction Manager, the measures comply with current environmental regulations. The large, corrugated, black plastic pipe is temporarily catching the water from the existing stream which enters the property on the western side of the site, at the base of the hill formed by the MD 32 on ramp. This temporary pipe drains into the storm drain located on the opposite side of the enlarged facility, close to the intersection of Grace Drive and Cedar Lane. To minimize the impact of sediment flowing from the site into the basin and storm drain, all ex-posed soil has been mulched with straw as required. While this project is on hold, SHA and their contractors have moved on to do similar work at other locations. As of the publication date of the November newsletter, the association has been unable to confirm whether a new design has been approved and when construction will re-start.