by Janice Steinhagen Contact Reporter, Staff Writer
The fall landscape in some Griswold neighborhoods will be significantly altered this year, as much-needed repairs to Glasgo Dam get underway with a drawdown of Glasgo Pond.
The $4 million project, which is projected to take more than a year, got underway after Labor Day, with water being diverted around the dam through a sluice. Over the course of weeks, the lakebed has slowly been revealed, as the Pachaug River continues to course through its riverbed in the Doaneville neighborhood of Griswold.
State officials initially planned to start repairs on the 170-year-old dam last year, but property owners around the lake protested when their dug wells began drying up. Their pressure persuaded the state to delay the job for a year, allowing them time to drill deeper wells or make other arrangements. Local officials worked with lending institutions and well-drilling companies to offer affected residents low-interest loans and top priority for drilling projects.
Workers from D’Amato Construction Co. in Bristol are planning to reinforce the original stone dam structure with concrete armoring and steel cables. They will also install new gates to allow for faster drawdown in the future. The dam will still be faced with its original stone and topped off with soil and grass to retain its historic appearance.
According to Chris Cullen, senior project manager for Fuss & O’Neill, the project’s engineering firm, the repairs will allow the dam to withstand a rainfall of 13 to 14 inches over the course of 24 hours.