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Details wanted on Valhalla Drive sewer

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Many of the details surronding the upcoming placement of a new sanitary sewer line to replace existing lines under Valhalla Drive are still up in the air, with a shovel set to go into the ground early next year.

The Department of Design and Construction made a presentation to concerned homeowners at Community Board 10’s Municipal Services Committee meeting on Tuesday, November 22 about the installation of a new sanitary sewer line, a project that according to the agency is now about five percent complete, with digging to begin in the spring. The $900,000 project is to be finished by the summer.

Valhalla Drive was left out of the Country Club sewer replacement project that ended in 1990 because it was not then a dedicated city street. This left approximately 37 homes, with private lines hooked up to six-inch sewer main running perpendicular to the street, said 34-year Valhalla Drive resident Tom Colacioppo of 3191 Valhalla Drive. Colacioppo is concerned that his private sewer may be left out of the project because it is seprate from his neighbor’s private sewers.

“Nothing is formal and everything is hearsay,” Colacioppo said of the city’s approach. “They will connect whatever lines they find to the new sanitary line which will run under the street. If they dig on my side of the street, the odds are they will find my line. If they dig on the other side of the street, they might not.”

Valhalla Drive is different from most city streets, where the sewer lines run from each home to the center of the street. Instead, Valhalla Drive sewers are a patchwork of privately installed pipes, know as temporary connections, that sometimes run through residents’ property.

It is not even clear if a sewer line leaves Colacioppo’s property at the curb or elsewhere, leaving the homeowner concerned that he may have to hire a private plumber to hook up his house to the new sanitary line.

Since Valhalla Drive was dedicated a city street in 1991, the city should assume all responsibility for the so-called “private” lines running underneath the street, said Marcia Pavlica, president of the Country Club Civic Association.

“They took the street for better or for worse,” Pavlica said. “The people on Valhalla Drive have gone above and beyond as taxpayers. Tom has worked with us for 20 years to get his block to conform to city codes.”

The CCCA has worked and will continue to work with the Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of Design and Construction, Pavlica said.

All residents must be connected to a city sewer and all other existing lines need to be abandoned, said CB 10 district manager Kenneth Kearns.

Patrick Rocchio can be reach via e-mail at procchio@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 742-3393

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CNG: Community Newspaper Group