Project Description

Flood Resilience Scoping Study for the Town of Whitingham, VT

The East Branch of the North River passes through Jacksonville, Vermont, the central village in Whitingham. The village contains a mix of residences, businesses, and municipal buildings, including the town offices, library, and fire house. During major storm events, the river floods the village. The most serious flood in recent years occurred during Tropical Storm Irene, in 2011, when flood levels, as estimated through USGS StreamStats from nearby USGS stream gauges, reached the 200-year level. Less catastrophic but severe flooding remains an ongoing problem in this area, causing both inundation and erosion

In partnership with Fitzgerald Environmental Associates, MSK conducted a scoping study to investigate ways to protect the village from severe flooding through improvements to the river channel, floodplain, bridge, culvert, and surrounding infrastructure. This work required road realignment, in compliance with VTrans Municipal Assistance Bureau requirements, in order to accommodate the removal of a bridge, widen and stabilize the channel, and expand the floodplain.

MSK also developed conceptual alternatives, oversaw plan production, coordinated with subconsultants, managed public meetings, and oversaw the schedule for all deliverables. The new structure will be designed with a span and vertical clearance that accommodates the East Branch of the North River through all appropriate flow events in accordance with MSK’s recommendations in an existing Scoping Study, River Corridor Plan and Hydraulics Study.

The Scoping Study recommended a 56’ long by 2 16’ wide culvert with a naturalized bottom for the structure replacement. The town decided to pursue engineering of the recommended Alternative 2 as outlined in the Scoping Study and phase 2 is currently underway.

At a Glance
  • Client: Town of Whitingham
  • Project Dates: 2020–present
  • Feasibility Assessment
  • Scoping Study