Battered by heavy rainfall Thursday night, Ithaca and surroundings affected by flooding

August 9, 2013

The season's most dramatic storms to date came through Central New York on Thursday night, and left flash flooding and debris in its wake. Cortland County has advised "no unnecessary travel," the Cortlandville Walmart parking lot is flooded, and creeks and roadways around Tompkins County are flooded or strewn with branches and other debris.

Fall Creek at flood stage in Forest Home.Fall Creek at flood stage in Forest Home.The Tompkins County Department of Emergency Response says most roads in the Ithaca area are passable, but "many are waterlogged, with water running off surrounding land and into the roadway." The Town of Enfield and Town of Lansing are particularly hard hit, with ditches overflowing traffic lanes and some driveways washed out. We're hearing that Route 414 is closed in stretches between Corning and Watkins Glen. The Schuyler County Sheriff's Department advises travelers approaching Watkins Glen from the south and west to take I-86 (Route 17) to Horseheads and then Route 14 north.

County officials remind motorists never to drive through flooded roadways, since it's difficult to tell how deep the water may be.

The Hangar Theatre, in a low-lying area of Taughannock Boulevard near Cass Park and Cayuga Lake that was closed to traffic for a while Thursday night, had flooding this morning and has decided to cancel tonight's production of "Clybourne Park." Staff, board members, and volunteers were hard at work in the building for much of the day. The Ticket Center will contact ticket-holders for tonight's show to make arrangements to trade for other performances, and the show will open Saturday night.

Ithaca Falls this morning. Photo courtesy of Sandra Cook.Ithaca Falls this morning. Photo courtesy of Sandra Cook.Cornell University and the City of Ithaca have closed gorge trails surrounding the campus due to flood conditions and debris on trails. The lower Cascadilla Creek Gorge trail is closed from Linn Street to Stewart Avenue, the Horseshoe Falls and Risley Hall trails are closed in Fall Creek Gorge, and trails around Beebe Lake are closed. Cornell officials say, "All members of the community are reminded that gorges and trails are dangerous during storms and flood events." 

Governor Andrew Cuomo, in Central New York to help kick off this weekend's NASCAR event in Watkins Glen, is visiting affected homeowners and county crews working to clear flooded and debris-strewn roadways.


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