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State of Emergency Extended in Ithaca

Written By: Tanja Rekhi
State of Emergency Extended in Ithaca

ITHACA (WENY) -- The water in Cascadilla Creek is back within its banks after ice jams caused major flooding throughout Ithaca, but it's taken a lot to get there. Emergency crews worked around the clock, breaking up ice chunks and using warm treated wastewater to melt the ice.
      Work is still being done today and a local state of emergency has been extended.
     "We are still assessing the damage, still doing cleanup and we still have overtime crews working," said Ithaca Mayor, Svante Myrick.
     Neighbors avoided repeat flooding as temperatures rose over the weekend-- melting more ice. What was like an ice rink in Eva Revesz's backyard last week is now a melted, slushy mess. 
     "I'm just really glad and grateful for the whole community pulling together," said Revesz. "We're lucky this weekend we avoided another mini crisis in our house."
     Eva and her neighbors are still concerned. None of them can remember seeing Cascadilla dredged over the years they've lived here. According to the Mayor, that's scheduled to happen this Spring - thanks to $13 Million in state funds.
     "We suspect that dredging our creeks and our flood control channel can only help," said Mayor Myrick. "The lower the level of sediment that's there, the more volume of water we can fit in our creeks."
      Neighbors who dealt first hand with flooding last week say that's a step in the right direction.
     "I'm optimistic that maybe this is the key to solving this kind of situation in the future," said Revesz.
     Mayor Myrick says the city did an estimate on how much dredging all the creeks would cost. That totaled about $120 million more.