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5-13-09

 

 

 

 

 

 

Controversial
sewer plan studied

by Alan McArthur
Landmark reporter

Park Hill School District sought public input on Monday from residents near a proposed gravity sewer line from Union Chapel Elementary School.

The district presented several options for residents and requested comments from those in attendance.

The new options at the meeting included four on-site solutions to replace the current sewage package plant at the school. SK Design Group, Inc. evaluated the four solutions and recommended the membrane biological reactor (MBR).

Previously, the board has been pursuing a gravity fed sewer to run from the school though a valley to the east and connect into an existing sewer line near Crooked Road and Highway 45.

The plan has been met with resistance from residents who would be forced to hook into the line by the Platte County Regional Sewer District (PCRSD) if their home is within 400 feet of the line.

The proposed gravity fed sewer line is now estimated to cost $1.25 million and would run 1.7 miles. The district would also have to pay homeowners for the damage to their property and for construction easements to place the line.

Homeowners would be forced to connect to the line and pay for the connection in order to bypass their current septic tanks. The cost for the line to connect homes is estimated between $80,000 and $140,000 per home.

The option for an MBR system would cost $979,298 for construction and would have an annual operation cost of $30,000.

At 30 years the MBR is estimated to have a total cost of $2,196,340 including maintenance costs, according to information provided by SK Design Group. The gravity sewer system would have a total 30-year cost of $1,566,431.

Sassan Mahobian, president of SK Design Group, said his firm recommended the MBR because it is the easiest to maintain and has a 10,000 gallons per day capacity, while the other three options can only handle 5,000 gallons per day.

According to Chuck Reineke, PCRSD director, the sewer district board passed amendments to allow residents to seek an exception from the required connection.

In order to have an exception, the homeowner must meet all of the criteria, which include providing two estimates of the cost to connect, proving the current on-site system is working properly by submitting paperwork every three years, no additions or improvements to the on-site system will be allowed without approval by the PCRSD board of trustees, and the funds for the connection are not from PCRSD funds, bonds, state funds, or federal funds.

Reineke said that if the requirements are met, the board would then have to decide whether to allow the exception or not.

According to Jim Rich, Park Hill director of operations, the Park Hill School Board will receive information regarding the options at their meeting on Thursday, May 14.

The district staff may then make a recommendation of an option as soon as the next meeting on Thursday, May 28.

Paul Kelly, assistant superintendent for business and technology, said the staff had not decided on a specific recommendation to make to the board, but may actually make a recommendation after the May 28 meeting.

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