DEQ provides funding
An extension of city sewer from Lee Street north to Tops Trailer Park is well under way in north Madras.
According to Jeff Hurd, public works director for the city of Madras, Dice Construction of Bend is currently working on the first phase -- the upper portion of the project, from Lee Street to Tops Trailer Park.
Their project completion date is Dec. 3 for the 1,945-foot section of 8-inch sewer main, which will serve residents on Third and Fourth streets and Lee Street in the Mountain View and Sky Ridge subdivisions, as well as residents of Tops Trailer Park.
That portion of the project is estimated at $434,738.
The lower portion, an 18-inch sewer main from the lift station on B Street up to Lee Street -- 1,631 feet -- will increase capacity to the city's sewer system, Hurd said.
"Currently everything from the north end of town that runs through the lift station on B Street is pumped to corresponding sewer plant -- either the north plant or the south plant," he said.
"As more development progresses in the northern and eastern portion of town, we'll be able to handle the capacity," he said. "The size of the line we have now won't be adequate to handle future development."
Cost for the lower portion, which is expected to be completed by Feb. 13, $197,707.
Total budget for the project is about $735,000. "The city will be reimbursed for 100 percent of the cost of the construction and design," said Hurd.
"We have a loan through DEQ for up to $735,000" he explained. "Seventy-five percent of it will be principal foregiveness. (The total project) will cost the city about $182,000."
Hurd pointed out that the expansion will provide sewer infrastructure into a neighborhood that is currently served by septic systems.
"As septic systems fail, it gives them an opportunity to connect to city sewer," he said. "Right now, the majority of that neighborhood is (outside the city limits) in the county."
Most importantly, "This will resolve the problem with Tops, because they will be able to connect to city sewer and decommission their existing drill hole," he said.
Tops Trailer Park had faced a substantial fine, imposed by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality in 2007, for not decommissioning the trailer park's drill hole.
By connecting to city sewer, Phil and Brigitte Morsman, owners of Tops Trailer Park, will avoid the DEQ's fine. They will pay an estimated $38,000 for the city's system development charges, in addition to hiring a plumber to connect to the sewer main and decommission their disposal well.