Ground broken on new MW sewer plant

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By Alex Wimsatt

    MOUNT WASHINGTON - After years of preparation for a new waste water treatment plant in Mount Washington, local officials and representatives from contracting firm W. Rogers Company recently gathered for a ground breaking ceremony to turn some dirt on the site where W. Rogers will construct a new treatment plant within the next year and a half.

    “We’re excited to be in Mount Washington and working on a project of this magnitude,” said W. Rogers president Warren Rogers. “We expect a really good project.”

    The ground breaking marked the first day of construction, giving W. Rogers until December 2011 to finish.

    “This is a real step up for the city,” said city engineer Dave Derrick.

    Derrick said the financing for the $15 million project was in place, with the city borrowing $1 million less than originally anticipated.

    The project is being paid for with $4.5 million in city funds, a $1 million grant from the Kentucky General Assembly and a $9.5 million Revolving Fund Loan from the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority.

    The existing plant servicing Mount Washington was built in 1989 for $1.4 million.

    “This is a big expansion,” said city treatment plant superintendent Barry Gentry.

    Gentry explained that the first treatment plant in Mount Washington was built in 1973, pumping 400,000 gallons of water a day. When the plant was expanded in 1989 it pumped 900,000 gallons a day, which is the current capacity.

    Derrick said the new plant will pump 3.5 million gallons a day when it’s built, potentially having the capacity for 21 million gallons.

    Derrick also said the plant would provide a higher level of treatment with better quality effluent, meaning that the byproduct produced by the plant will be cleaner when it goes into local waterways like the Salt River. 

    According to Derrick, the new plant would be a more reliable facility, boasting a diesel-powered generator that could keep the plant running in case of power failure.