MERRILLVILLE — Officials are planning to increase the capacity of drainage lines in two areas of town to address flooding issues.

Matt Lake, executive director of Merrillville's Stormwater Utility, said water backs up on Sunset Road as well as 54th Place after rain events because aging stormwater lines on those streets are deteriorating.

The plan was to start projects on both roads in the spring, but the work needs to begin now on a portion of Sunset Road because of a pipe collapse there, Lake said.

He said Delta III has been hired to replace the collapsed portion of 12-inch pipe with a new 24-inch line. The work will cost about $24,000, Lake said.

In the spring, the utility is expected to finish upgrading the entire drainage system on Sunset Road with new 24-inch pipe.

The Stormwater Management Board on Tuesday also hired Robinson Engineering to design a similar project on 54th Place between Madison and Adams streets.

Lake said construction for that drainage upgrade also is expected to begin in the spring. He said new stormwater lines with a larger capacity will be installed. The size of the new pipe hasn't yet been determined.

Lake said new catch basins also will be added on 54th Place.

He said after stormwater officials address the drainage system, public works employees will repave the road.

In another matter, the Stormwater Management Board was told Robinson Engineering is finalizing plans to address drainage issues in the Southmoor Park subdivision.

The engineering work could be completed by January, Lake said. After plans are reviewed, Merrillville could then seek bids for the project near Madison Street and 78th Avenue.

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