Nassau County, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo celebrated the start of construction on the Bay Park Conveyance Project in Nassau County. The project, which will redirect treated water from the South Shore Reclamation Facility — formerly the Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant — to the Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant’s ocean outfall, is a critical component of the state’s sustained efforts to reduce nitrogen pollution and restore water quality in the Western Bays and surrounding South Shore Long Island communities.
Overseen by the NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation, the design-build contractor Western Bays Constructors Joint Venture started construction on the diversion structure and the first microtunneling shaft for the project. The diversion structure will eventually direct treated water away from the current outfall in Reynolds Channel and into the new pump station being built as part of the project. This fall, the contractor will be using this first microtunneling shaft to retrieve the Microtunnel Boring Machine after it completes the first segment of the new force main. The diversion structure will also become part of the foundation of the new pump station.
The project will convey fully treated water by: constructing a two-mile, 72-inch force main north from the Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant to the county-owned aqueduct that runs under Sunrise Highway; rehabilitating and lining a 7.3-mile stretch of the abandoned aqueduct; and constructing a 1.6-mile, 72-inch force main from the aqueduct to the existing Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant’s ocean outfall pipe. The new force main segments will be constructed using microtunneling 20 to 60 ft. below the ground surface.
This Bay Park Conveyance Project builds on $830 million in state and federal funds previously invested in the multi-year resilient rebuild of the Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant. These projects, combined along with other state and county investments in resiliency, support the restoration of the Western Bays, protect important marine resources, and boost local economies with the added benefit of better protection to coastal communities against future damage from storms.
Environmental Facilities Corp. will assist the county with more than $395 million in funding through the Clean Water State Revolving Fund and Storm Mitigation Loan Program during the initial phase of the project. This includes $362 million in low cost loans and $33.9 million in grant funding. It is anticipated EFC will provide additional support as the project progresses.
When completed, the Bay Park Conveyance Project will divert as much as 75 million gallons of treated water per day from Reynolds Channel and the Western Bays ecosystem and reduce up to 90% of the nitrogen loading. The resulting water quality response will improve regional resiliency and quality of life. The Nassau County Department of Public Works will own and operate the new facilities.
“For decades nitrogen has been harming the Western Bays’ waters and habitats, and on this Earth Day we are making a real difference by not just talking about the problem, but actually delivering solutions that will make a real difference for these communities,” gov. Cuomo said. “The start of construction on the Bay Park Conveyance Project marks a critical milestone in our ambitious plan to improve water quality and environmental health on Long Island and across the state, and it will fundamentally change the entire South Shore for generations to come.”
“The revitalization of the Western Bays will improve our environment and provide greater storm resiliency to thousands of homeowners and businesses,” Nassau County executive Laura Curran said. “This significant investment in Nassau’s environment creates jobs, spurs economic development and protects homeowners by restoring the critical marshlands that serve as vital buffers during storms. I thank governor Cuomo for making this project a priority by employing a seamless design-build strategy that slashes the amount of time required to build out the infrastructure needed to improve water quality and rejuvenate our environment for generations to come.”
DEC commissioner Basil Seggos said, “This Earth Day, DEC is proud to partner with Nassau County on the ambitious and transformational Bay Park Conveyance Project that will reduce nitrogen pollution and in doing so restore water quality in the Western Bays, benefitting marine resources and providing critical storm and flood protections for Nassau County’s coastal communities. The milestone we celebrate today further builds on the State’s sustained commitment to strengthening coastal resiliency, improving quality of life, and restoring the environment across Long Island.”
Joseph Rabito, Environmental Facilities Corp. (EFC) president and CEO said, “This project is a prime example of how governments work harder and smarter when they partner together and work towards the common goals we all value, such as resiliency and healthy communities here in Long Island and across New York State. By providing grants and low-cost financing for investments like this major infrastructure project at Bay Park, EFC makes it easier for municipalities to address critical needs that ultimately result in better water quality for citizens and wildlife and stronger protections when storms threaten their vital marshlands.”