Malone’s Lower Park Street, perennial site of flooding, again inundated by water and ice

MALONE –– A portion of Lower Park Street will remain closed until warmer temperatures clear a mass of ice and water caused by the flooding of the Salmon River.

A quarter-mile stretch of the road was inundated by flood waters Sunday afternoon, resulting from an ice jam formed in Lamica Lake following a week of below-freezing temperatures, which are expected to persist through much of this week.

The site has regularly fallen victim to flooding in years past, resulting in evacuations and the purchase and demolition of nine houses repeatedly affected by the flooding, which is understood to result from a buildup of sediment in the river bed.

No Lower Park Street residents have been evacuated as a result of the most recent flooding, though Franklin County Highway Department crews on scene reported that the occupants of roughly five homes are currently storing their vehicles away from the flood zone, where water and ice measure roughly one foot thick in the roadway.

The crews reported that little can be done to reopen the roadway until warmer temperatures melt the ice, causing the water to recede. Once that happens, a grader will be brought in to scrape residual ice from the roadway to be reopened.

The closure of the roadway also carries consequences for emergency crews, who must now detour away from Lower Park Street when approaching Malone’s Alice Hyde Medical Center from points north.

Local and state officials have been seeking funds to dredge or otherwise remediate the flooding issue, though no long-term solution has been found. On a visit to the flood zone last winter, U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik detailed a newly developed program offered through the Army Corps of Engineers, which is designed specifically to address the impact of ice jams in waterways. The congresswoman also noted her office’s involvement with FEMA, stating that she would continue to research federal offerings available.

Read the article at Watertown Daily Times