Stormwater Alternatives Evaluation
Village Begins Stormwater Management Study to Evaluate Non-Tunnel Alternatives
In the spring of 2015, the Village Council discussed a project and cost updates for the Willow Road Stormwater Tunnel and Area Drainage Improvements (STADI) project prepared by MWH, the Village’s consulting engineering firm for the project. The Village and its engineers had been utilizing a 2012 cost conceptual design estimate of $34.6 million was for the STADI project. MWH further detailed the initial Tunnel design and updated costs, resulting in a new project estimate of $58.5 million in April, 2015.
Due to the significant increase in estimated cost, the Village engaged V3 Companies to complete an independent, third- party engineering review of the project-- primarily to assess the accuracy and reliability of the MWH estimate. In September, 2015, V3 Companies communicated an increase in cost estimate to $81.3 million. Faced with this new cost estimate, the Village Council elected to suspend further work on the STADI project and instead, further explore improvements and alternatives to a tunnel-based design for Western and Southwestern areas of Winnetka.
In October, 2015, the Council hired Strand Associates to complete a stormwater management evaluation to uncover and evaluate a series of creative, holistic, technically and scientifically sound, sustainable, feasible, and cost-effective improvements that will provide flood risk reduction for areas of southern and western Winnetka for appropriate levels of protection up to a 100-year event,
including Area L (South of Willow Road), Areas J & G (North of Willow Road – the “Tree Streets”), and Area H (Provident Study Area). Strand has a proven track record of finding creative stormwater solutions for its clients that the Village believes is critical to identifying potential flood risk reduction solutions.
Importantly, Strand Associates was selected in part based on the firm's commitment to engaging the community. Strand will partner with the Village to implement a proactive public outreach strategy to ensure that its work incorporates ideas, input and suggestions from members of the community, environmental stakeholders, other agencies, and government decision makers.