Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness for Resilient Canal Wall, Riverwalk, and Park
Weston & Sampson is helping the City of Peabody to increase its resilience against flooding in Peabody Square and along the North River Canal. We will conduct a site investigation and resiliency evaluation to propose the introduction of green infrastructure along the south bank of the canal and to determine the feasibility of reconfiguring portions of the land along the canal to accommodate flood waters, thus providing relief to elsewhere in the system. In addition to facilitating the detention of stormwater, the use of green infrastructure will provide the public with relief from extreme heat under climate change.
Focusing on the south bank of the North River Canal, we will conduct an alternatives analysis and preliminary design to replace the failing flood-control wall, portions of which are crumbling into the canal. Based on a visual inspection performed by Weston & Sampson on approximately 1,600 feet of the wall in 2017, its condition varies drastically over its length, ranging from “good,” which need minor or no repairs, to “poor,” and requires full or partial reconstruction.
We will develop a preliminary design of a riverwalk along the south bank in the urban industrial section of downtown Peabody between Wallis Street and Howley Street. Creation of this park resource will enhance public access and the economic vitality of the city’s downtown. We will develop a permitting strategy for the project and engage the community in a robust outreach process to ensure that the design reflects the interests of the public. In addition to improved resiliency, this project will address contamination from historic use of the site as a tannery district. This project is supported by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs, through a Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Action Grant.