Needed pipe on order, Naugatuck repair could be weeks away

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Tropical Storm Irene further damaged the entrance to Mountview Plaza and Webster Bank from Rubber Avenue, but a lawyer representing the company that owns the shopping center said they could begin fixing it within the month.  - RA ARCHIVE
Hurricane Irene further damaged the entrance to Mountview Plaza and Webster Bank from Rubber Avenue, but a lawyer representing the company that owns the shopping center said they could begin fixing it within the month. - RA ARCHIVE

NAUGATUCK — The ruined driveway leading from Rubber Avenue to Webster Bank changed shape yet again after Tropical Storm Irene, which washed more of the asphalt into Long Meadow Brook and gave the pavement that remains the appearance of bubbling black soup.

Mancinone Realty, the company that owns Mountview Plaza and leases a parcel to Webster Bank, has told borough officials the damage will not affect its timeline for repairing the entrance to the bank’s drive-through ATM. An attorney representing the company told the Inland Wetlands and Watercourses Commission last week that a necessary pipe would arrive within the month and the whole driveway would be repaired quickly after that, Town Planner Keith D. Rosenfeld said.

“I think it’s going to be done in about six to eight weeks,” Rosenfeld said.

Heavy rains in March caused Long Meadow Brook to flood and a pipe to burst under the asphalt, opening a hole several feet deep that ate up 120 square feet of the entrance from Rubber Avenue. The entrance was subsequently blocked off, restricting access to the ATMs.

Customers are still able to access an ATM in the bank’s vestibule, which they can enter after hours by swiping their bank cards.

The brook overflowed again during the tropical storm two weeks ago, completely inundating Rubber Avenue outside Mountview Plaza, where the bank, Stop & Shop and other stores are located. When the water receded, more of the pavement outside the bank was damaged and police blocked off more of the area around it.

Contractors hired by Mancinone Realty will have to add rocks to stabilize a gas line that could have come loose when the concrete around it washed away, Rosenfeld said. Other than that, plans to fix the driveway have not changed, Rosenfeld said. The company had already planned to install another 6-foot pipe, pave the road and rebuild the retaining walls that support it.

The company’s lawyer, Pasquale M. Salvatore of Yamin & Grant in Waterbury, did not tell borough officials how much the repairs would cost, Rosenfeld said. Salvatore did not return a message Wednesday seeking comment.

The borough is not requiring the company to fix the damaged drive because the fire department ruled that closing it does not present a fire hazard. Webster Bank, however, would like the area fixed so its customers can access the ATMs again, representatives have said.

The inland wetlands commission must approve all work on the site because it could impact the brook that runs through it.