The day after the storm of May 29, Williamstown Town Manager Peter Fohlin was quoted saying in the local press that the Spruces Mobile Home Park experienced only "nuisance flooding."
I had heard from an employee in a local business that water had been shooting up out of the ground inside the white picket fence like a geyser in front of the Spruces Recreation Center the night of the storm, and the picture of debris confirm high water levels within that fence taken the next morning.
I also had heard that as the result of the storm, the Rec Center, itself, had been flooded.
On Friday, May 31, the Town's Long Term Coordinating Committee was scheduled to meet at The Spruces for an opportunity of the Residents to present their housing needs to the committee. Surprisingly the meeting was held outside under The Spruces' picnic shelter where the noise from Route 2 traffic made it difficult for the audience to hear.
The June 6 Advocate, in an article titled, "Mother Nature Doesn't Want To Settle Down," The Spruces manager is quoted as saying "It wasn't the pipe, it wasn't the river, it wasn't the drains." Rather she said the problem was a wall of water which swept across Route 2 into the park which caused flooding in the Park on May 29, and left about an inch of water inside the Recreation Hall.
Does "nuisance" flooding include an inch of water inside a building?
During my brief visit to the Spruces on Thursday morning after the storm, I did notice that the grass along the south side of Route 2 was flattened by the prior night's water flow.
However, plenty of water also made it into the pipe under Route 2, too. The problem is that once it runs through the pipe it enters the open air and is supposed to then enter a different pipe which allegedly runs to the Hoosic River. The opening and size of this pipe is far too small. That is why all the water inside the white picket fence was observed shooting up to the sky like a geyser. It has no place to go when the volume gets too high.
The water levels inside the white picket fence reached a level well above a foot high as indicated by the picture and the debris piled up against the inside of the fence, which could only come from water and flow through the pipe under Route 2, not over the highway.
This is why it is critical that the US Army Corps of Engineers be immediately invited to make recommendations regarding all aspects of flooding on The Spruces property from all three sources of water from the south and from the river. The Mass Highway Department should also be brought on board to replace the culverts under the highway, which are way too small to handle all the water flow brought on by the airport expansion tree cutting project.