Skip to main content

A Simple Solution to Combined Sewer Flooding in Boston's South End

Buy Article:

$17.50 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Or sign up for a free trial


A relatively simple, innovative, low-cost flap gate and remote sensor system resolved major combined sewer flooding problems in Boston's South End. This neighborhood had been flood-prone since its development in the 1800s. Ground elevations in portions of the South End are just above high tide and many apartments are below street level. Hydraulic modeling demonstrated that a system of flap gates partially blocking pipe connections would effectively limit flow reversals from citywide interceptors. Camp Dresser & McKee Inc. (CDM) designed the proposed improvements in 2000 and the system was constructed that year. Since then, there have been no reports of flooding in the South End. This paper reviews the hydraulic engineering that led to the recommended improvements, and assesses Boston Water and Sewer Commission level sensor data to demonstrate the degree of flood protection the flap gates provide to Boston's South End.

Keywords: Boston; combined sewer; flap gate; flooding; remote sensor system

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2010-01-01

More about this publication?
  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

    A subscription to the Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation includes access to most papers presented at the annual WEF Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC) and other conferences held since 2000. Subscription access begins 12 months after the event and is valid for 12 months from month of purchase. A subscription to the Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is included in Water Environment Federation (WEF) membership.

    WEF Members: Sign in (right panel) with your IngentaConnect user name and password to receive complimentary access. Access begins 12 months after the conference or event
  • Subscribe to this Title
  • Membership Information
  • About WEF Proceedings
  • WEFTEC Conference Information
  • Learn about the many other WEF member benefits and join today
  • Ingenta Connect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more