LACONIA — At the request of the Department of Public Works, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (DES) has authorized the Union Cemetery Association to address the damage caused by high water in Meadow Brook and Durkee Brook during the heavy rainstorm last week.
A five-foot culvert carrying Meadow Brook underground along the south side of the cemetery failed, opening a large sinkhole, and rising water collapsed a stretch of bank on Durkee Brook on the north edge of the cemetery. At both locations, measures are required to protect adjacent burial plots and mausoleums placed at risk from further erosion.
The emergency authorization will enable the association to replace about 60 feet of the failed culvert on Meadow Brook and stabilize some 90 feet of stream bank on Durkee Brook. John Perley, president of the Union Cemetery Association, said Steven J. Smith & Associates will engineer the project and Lyman Construction will perform the work.
Suzanne Perley, who manages the association's accounts, anticipates that the cost of the two projects will exceed $50,000. She said that funds have been set aside in anticipation of improving the roadways through the cemetery and expected they would now be applied to defraying the cost of the repairs.
In authorizing the work DES required the association and its contractor to adhere to a number of conditions intended to forestall further adverse impacts to the brooks and their surroundings.
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