Officials mark construction end for Gary Black Oak sewer improvement project

Published May 16, 2014

GARY, Ind. – Rep. Peter Visclosky, local officials, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers held a ribbon cutting ceremony to mark the construction end for the Gary Black Oak phase II sewer improvement project, May 16, 2014.

“The Corps is proud to be a partner in this project that will help reduce the risk of roadway and basement flooding in this highly-traveled and busy business section of Gary," Corps Chicago District Deputy Commander Lt. Col. Kevin Lovell said.

Construction included installing approximately 1,500 linear feet of 30-inch storm sewer, and storm inlets and catch basins on the southwest side of Gary. It also included full reconstruction of 25th Avenue between Calhoun and Burr streets. The flow from this area will be drained into an existing manhole on Burr Street, which will direct the flow south.

"Infrastructure investments are critical to the success of our local economy,” Visclosky said. “I extend my sincere appreciation to Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson, to the Gary Sanitary District, and to the Chicago District of the Corps for their dedicated work on the storm water interceptor project in the Black Oak area. This renovated system will alleviate the storm water challenges experienced by the City of Gary and improve water quality throughout the region."

"The completion of phase two of the Black Oak Sewer project is another great example of teamwork and progress," said Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson. "The residents of Black Oak deserve these upgrades, and we thank them for their patience during this process."

“On behalf of the Sanitary District, the City of Gary, and the Black Oak Community, and as the president of the Gary Sanitary Board of Commissioners, I would like to again express our appreciation to Congressman Peter Visclosky for having made this project possible and keeping his promise to do all that he could to bring about the elimination of the long-standing drainage problem in Black Oak,” Commissioner Richard Comer said. “And, it is with the greatest of pleasure and thank you that we are here this morning closing out Phase one and Phase two of the Black Oak Sewer Project.”

This project is authorized under the Water Resource Development Act’s Section 219 project authority, which allows the Corps to assist local governments in planning, designing, and constructing water-related projects. Projects under this authority are cost shared at 75 percent federal and 25 percent nonfederal. The local sponsor is Gary Sanitary District’s Storm Water Management District.

The contract was awarded to Industrial & Environmental Services of Gary, Ind., Dec. 28, 2012, for approximately $1.15 million. Field construction began May 2013.  Construction was completed Dec. 4, 2013, with only a few minor punch list items remaining, such as final videotaping of the interior of the newly-installed storm sewer.

View pictures from the event: 



Vanessa Villarreal

Release no. 051614-001