Getting back to work

Hamden resumes tornado cleanup on Sleeping Giant State Park

By on September 25, 2018

Hamden Mayor Curt Balzano Leng put out a press release Thursday, Sept. 20 announcing that tornado debris collection will resume Monday, Sept. 24 until Friday, Oct. 5 at Sleeping Giant State Park. This will be immediately followed by bulk trash collection until the end of October.

Morgan Tencza | The Quinnipiac Chronicle
The park was indefinitely closed after a tornado struck down in Hamden Tuesday, May 15, leaving significant damage to the 32 miles of trails and land. In its wake, Hamden residents were left with a path of destruction, resulting in uprooted and snapped hardwood and pine trees, according to the National Weather Service.

Four months later, remains still litter the area as residents and the Sleeping Giant Park Association (SGPA) work to rebuild their town.

In these efforts, storm debris collection will occur throughout the month of October in the Mt. Carmel and West Woods neighborhoods most heavily affected by the tornado only. Property owners living in these neighborhoods that were affected by the tornado are encouraged to move any remaining debris from their properties to the curbside in this time frame.

Any properties disposing of storm/vegetative debris beyond Oct. 5 and/or outside the boundaries of the storm affected areas may be subject to blight regulations and fines.

For those whom these forms of assistance don’t apply, residents may continue to dispose of storm debris at the Hamden Public Works Lot, located at 1125 Shepard Ave. and the Hamden Transfer Station located at 231 Wintergreen Ave. in Hamden.

The Public Works Lot is open weekdays, 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and the Transfer Station is open Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. and the first and third Saturday of the month from 8:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.

Disposal for residents is free at any lot but private contractors performing debris removal and disposal services must use Hamden Transfer Station only. A town disposal license is required for all commercial operators and can be purchased at the Hamden Public Works HQ, located at 1125 Shepard Avenue.

The SGPA has continuously kept residents up-to-date about this process as well as fundraisers that have been ongoing since the disaster through their Facebook page. Some of these events included a Mic Check by No Worries Brewery Sept. 14 and Pint Night, a run by the New Haven Road Runners set for Sept. 27 in New Haven. Although constant efforts are being made, there is still no clear sign as to when the park will be reopened.

“While we are all anxious, the answer is, most likely NO,” the SGPA Facebook post wrote. “The State is working towards getting bids from landscape architects. In the meantime, now that the weather will be cooler, there are plans to seed the now cleared areas. For obvious reasons, thousands of footsteps on newly sown grass would not be helpful.”

Until the time when the park is reopened, SGPA continuously posts and reposts of updated areas of the park and what is being done by members of the town and volunteers to put back the pieces of the Giant.

“In the meantime, authorized trail maintenance workers are still clearing trails, some still impassable,” the SGPA Facebook post wrote. “We share your impatience, but … while the destruction happened in a matter of minutes, the restoration will take much more time.”

Comments

About Jessica Ruderman

Associate News Editor