Coral Lakes’ soil results in poor drainage

April 22, 2022

Among the numerous problems associated with the proposed Coral Lakes cluster subdivision, none are more serious than the potential flooding problems the subdivision will cause. The risk of flooding is real for both the future homeowners of the subdivision and adjacent homeowners downstream of the site. This is not my opinion, but documented by the USDA’s report contained within the developer’s application.

So why is flooding such a concern on the Coral Lakes project? The USDA identifies the Fallsington soil type as the culprit across a large percentage of the tract. This soil type is known for poor drainage characteristics and a high water table. Clay layers at various intervals in the soil inhibit the downward percolation of the water and result in poor drainage conditions. The USDA also notes the presence of a mucky peat layer at the surface. Peat is an indicator of swamp conditions, and the developer’s wetlands expert was kind enough to provide us with a picture of said conditions on page 250 of the application.

The Coral Lakes site is unsuitable for development. The Sussex County Planning & Zoning Commission has already denied the Coral Lakes application based upon a multitude of problems (which includes the risk of flooding). I am asking the council to uphold the decision of P&Z and deny the appeal of the developer. It is the right thing to do for Sussex County and its residents.  

David Chernuta


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