[CT Birds] Comment on Looming Plans to Massive Develop Silver Sands SP

Parrot sisserou at charter.net
Mon Jul 10 12:23:31 EDT 2017

This address the characterization (mis) of plans for Silver Sands.  The Plans for this Park were developed over 10 years ago and were reviewed by DEP Divisions and the public at large and were approved.  In the Coastal Management Program I finally got Parks to agree to stay our of the wetlands and allow for the restoration of the degraded tidal marshes beginning via tidal flow restoration (new outlet) and abandoning the old outlet (small diameter pipe and culvert that drained the marsh and caused subsidence).  Parks was between a rock and a hard place, Coastal Management wanted as much retention of stormwater through groundwater infiltration yet the could not punch through the impervious barrier covering the landfill.  So the swales between parking ‘lots’ are a means to maximize stormwater retention and minimize discharge to tidal wetlands which can often depress salinity and increase the area occupied by Phragmites.  We even convinced Parks to restore the former barrier beach (beach and dunes) which was formerly a state road that paves and bulkheaded.

Portions of the landfill were proposed for recreational activities like fields.  Just one building to be constructed in the SE corner.  

The City of Milford was the cause of the delays in construction.  I believe they were hoping that the state would transfer the park to them.  Absent the facilities, there was no justification to initiate access fee collection.

Back in the late 1980’s, were able to convince Parks and Water Resources to address backwater flooding that occurred in Great Creek as the tide gates were usually blocked with sand.  This was a drainage improvement project and we recommended a new channel towards the west end and self-regulating tide gates to prevent flooding on the lowest lying cottage on the marsh side of the beach at elevation 3.25’.  We knew this wasn’t the ideal height but it did lead to significant restoration of large areas of this marsh.

I have a copy of the 1960’s plan for this beach - that indeed was massive!  Coney Island style.

Ron, Ashford

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