The Thruway Authority has complained to the Town of Cheektowaga about an "unsanctioned use of a Thruway drainage easement" in the William Street area.
The matter involves a half-mile-long storm drainage route carrying rain water from the Thruway by pipe under Ludwig and Raymond avenues, Vern Drive, William Street and Cayuga Creek Road, then by ditch to Cayuga Creek.
Town Engineer Chester L. Bryan denied any unauthorized use of the easement, and expressed willingness to provide documentation to the authority.
"Nearby extensive residential developments have been using our drainage easement for some time without our knowledge or consent, raising serious concerns," Keith E. Giles, a Thruway Authority engineer, said in a recent letter to Town Supervisor Frank E. Swiatek.
"The actual easement has been altered in the vicinity of Cayuga Creek Road, with the questionable installation of additional piping," the letter added.
Giles asked the town to provide a comprehensive drainage study, or the authority would hire an engineering firm to make the study and bill the town for it and "the necessary remediation measures," he said.
Bryan said drainage through the easement has not changed since it was acquired by the authority when the Thruway was built in the 1950s. There has been no additional piping, only replacement of existing piping, he said.
Bryan also said he knew of no "residential development in the planning stages" cited by Giles in his letter.
Bryan said he plans to discuss the matter with Swiatek, who is scheduled to return to work today after an Arizona vacation, and then discuss it with Thruway representatives.
The easement question surfaced with the construction of the Thruway's new interchange at William Street, and plans for the proposed Liberty Park Inn and Entertainment Center between William Street and Cayuga Creek Road, which has yet to receive town approval.