December 1, 2022
To: All interested Agencies, Groups and Individuals
This is to give notice that the City of Warwick under Part 58 has conducted an evaluation as required by Executive Order 11988 and/or 11990, to determine the potential affect that its activity in the wetland will have on the human environment for the Community Development Block Grant Program under HUD Grant B-19-MC-44-0004, B-20-MC-44-0004, B-21-MC-44-0004, B-22-MC-44-0004. (~41.684268 -71.39552) at the end of the area commonly referred to as the Oakland Beach Midway (Oakland Beach Avenue) and near the intersection of Oakland Beach Avenue and Stender Avenue on Warwick Tax Assessor’s Plat & Lots Plat/Lot – 375/562 & 376/549 and involves approximately 1 acre of area. The proposed project is located in the City of Warwick, County of Kent, and State of Rhode Island.
This is a combined notice pertaining to two (2) activities. The first activity is to remove the existing playground equipment and foundation walls from a previously abandoned section of the boardwalk and. This scope of work for this portion of the activity calls for installing a new playground features with corresponding pervious safety surface (poured in place rubber), the installation of a seasonal splash pad with integrated shade structure on a concrete pad, ADA compliant walkways and access points, site furnishings including tables, benches, and trash receptacles, coastal dune restoration along the beach and boardwalk. The second activity is to create stormwater improvements that will capture the run-off from the facility and from Oakland Beach Avenue aiding in improving the water quality of Greenwich Bay. The combined area of floodplain/wetlands involved in both activities is 1.0 acres (+/-).
The City of Warwick has considered the following alternatives and mitigation measures to be taken to minimize adverse impacts and to restore and preserve natural and beneficial values as relating to the activities proposed:
Alternatives to Installation of Playground, Splashpad & Dune Restoration:
· The City looked a moving the activity to another area in the general vicinity of the proposed site, this alternative was rejected as most of the complimentary amenities to the playground & splashpad are located along the beach and in the floodplain. In addition, other locations proposed were also in the floodplain or flood zone. It would also be impossible to perform dune restoration in an area that is not along the shoreline and had no dunes at one time.
· Obtaining a Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA) or Letter of Map Revision (LOMR), this alternative was rejected due to the scope of the project’s potential impact on the floodplain and the location of the project.
· “Do Nothing”, this alternative proved to be impracticable as increasesed passive and active recreation and shoreline resiliency is important to the residents.
Alternatives to Installation of Stormwater Improvements:
· The Office evaluated potential alternatives and determined that purpose of the stormwater improvements is to improve the water quality before it enters Greenwich Bay. Because of this, there was no way to relocate the proposed improvements out of the flood plain.
· “Do Nothing”, this alternative proved to be impracticable as the Association highlighted in their Master Plan that stormwater improvements are important to the residents.
City of Warwick has reevaluated the alternatives to building in the floodplain and has determined that it has no practicable alternative. Environmental files that document compliance with steps 3 through 6 of Executive Order 11988 and/or 11990, are available for public inspection, review and copying upon
request at the times and location delineated in the last paragraph of this notice for receipt of comments. These activities will have no significant impact on the environment for the following reason:
Based on scope of the improvements (installation of new playground equipment, a new splash pad water feature, coastal dune restoration, and stormwater improvements), the minimal amount of site work that is part of the overall scope of the activities and the potential positive benefits to the residents and the overall environment of the low to moderate income area, the proposed activities were deemed appropriate for taken place in the floodplain. All appropriate measures will be taken to ensure there will be minimal disturbance of the ground during installation.
There are three primary purposes for this notice. First, people who may be affected by activities in floodplains and those who have an interest in the protection of the natural environment should be given an opportunity to express their concerns and provide information about these areas. Second, an adequate public notice program can be an important public educational tool. The dissemination of information about floodplains can facilitate and enhance Federal efforts to reduce the risks and impacts associated with the occupancy and modification of these special areas. Third, as a matter of fairness, when the Federal government determines it will participate in actions taking place in floodplains, it must inform those who may be put at greater or continued risk.
Written comments must be received by the City of Warwick, Rhode Island at the following address on or before December 12, 2022: Office of Housing & Community Development, 3275 Post Road, Warwick, Rhode Island, 02886 and (401) 921-9688, Attention: William R. Facente, Manager. A full description of the project may also be reviewed from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm Monday - Friday at the Office of Housing & Community Development, 65 Centerville Road, Suite I (2nd floor), Warwick, Rhode Island, 02886. Comments may also be submitted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Frank J. Picozzi