Bound Brook, New Jersey gets washed out again.

Second major flood hits the proud little town in less than eight years!

New York Times as a piece from the victims’ perspectives:
Yet Another Flood, and Residents Ask, Why Stay Here?

This is another Congressman Mike Ferguson screwup.

As the Raritan Valley in New Jersey has built up over the past 40 years, nothing has been done to ameliorate flooding. Nothing.

The area we are talking about is a far suburb of New York City. It was a dairy farm center for a long time, with some industrial and manufacturing, dating from the 19th century, along the Raritan River. Small towns, that we call “boroughs”[,] were established or grew along the Raritan.

Bound Brook is one of these small towns. It sits about where two rivers, the Raritan and the Millstone, flow together. Farther upstream, the Raritan merges where two major branches, the North Branch and the South Branch come together.

It’s like flooding along the Mississippi. Few people understand that it’s really all the water flowing in from the Ohio River that makes those floods so bad. The misnaming leads to misunderstanding, to political inaction.

Polticians around New Jersey know that something called the “Green Brook Flood Control Project” will reduce the flooding of Bound Brook, by holding back some of the water coming from the Watchung Mountains. The Watchungs are hills that help create Raritan Valley.

And after one serious flooding in 1972, flood experts did get a plan before federal officials.

But plans cost money. And in addition, the part where, basically, the construction work has to happen is the nice, wealthy, hilly part of the valley. The people downstream are, not exclusively, but prominently, the work-a-day struggling middle class that, well, you know. Houses near rivers flood. Go find someplace else to live.

The laughtrack behind this farce, is that the local residents are told that this is “100 year flooding”. That is to say, these kinds of floods are only supposed to happen every 100 years.

The local joke among long-time residents, is that we had 100 year floods in the valley in 1972, 1999, and now I suppose, this one.

These are really 20 year floods.

In part, because the Raritan Valley built a lot of developments with storm drains that all point to Bound Brook.

Yet there has been no response at the federal level to a flood control project that would save a lot of grief!

But there will be plenty of opportunities for another generation of politicians to get their photo-ops and nice words said, as “helpers of Bound Brook”.


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