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Wastewater plant expansion delayed

SoVaNow.com / September 23, 2013
A raft of change orders has set back the expansion of the Maple Avenue wastewater treatment plant, members of the Halifax County Service Authority members learned during their regular monthly meeting on Thursday afternoon.

Of 11 change orders, one stems from a delay in delivery of American-made turbex blowers, now expected in October.

“We hope to complete the project by the end of 2013,” said Mark Estes, HCSA director.

The plant expansion had originally been expected to be completed by the end of August.

Estes also reported that survey and design work has begun on the HCSA’s Cowford Road project, which involves laying new water lines to improve service to the community. Estes said he hopes to have a final design for the project by the end of October.

When the design is complete, he said he plans to give adjoining property owners the opportunity to ask questions and to better understand the project.

Estes also reported that the Williams Company is constructing a 24-inch pipeline in the Webb Park area to supply fuel for the new Dominion natural gas plant in Brunswick. Where the pipeline crosses the authority’s sewer line near Avondale Drive, a section of the line will have to be relocated to allow for the construction of the pipeline.

Also, he said, the design of the Lasco pump station has been completed. The HCSA expects to advertise the work for bid in October, hoping to begin in early December.

Work on the Leigh Street water plant solids removal project is moving ahead of schedule, reported Estes, with only one change order received.

Also, staff members of the Authority are in the process of collecting and providing infrastructure data for the facilities plan developed by Draper Aden. That plan aims to set forth an organized approach to replacing the critical water and sewer infrastructure, say HCSA officials, based on several factors to determine how critical each line segment is — both in the water and sewer systems.

In reviewing HCSA finances, Estes said he is concerned about a new requirement by the Virginia Department of Transportation that dictates how repairs of roadways where water or sewer line cuts must be made. The new regulation could raise the authority’s cost of those repairs from around $1,200 to as much as $8,500 per site, he said.

With only $20,000 budgeted for such repairs, Estes said he is trying to get the new regulations changed back so as not to exceed the budget.

Estes said the HCSA continues to work toward the equalization of rates between in-town and out-of-town customers, which it has promised to attempt to achieve in future years.



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