Wastewater treatment plant project to be ready next month

July 28th, 2021     Government & Politics

Work is still moving ahead on New Albany’s new $15 million wastewater treatment facility scheduled to go into operation next month.

The plant, just north of town, will replace the city’s obsolete facility accessed from Chickasaw Drive. A bonus is that the change will move the plant from being so close to the park and sportsplex areas.

Part of the present facility will remain but most of the space will eventually be freed up.

A new pumping station is being built at the old site behind Reed’Market and one pool will be retained for emergency purposes but everything else will be removed.

The new pump plus the rarely used pool should dramatically reduce the odor problem, light, gas and water manager Bill Mattox said earlier.

The new plant also should have even less odor since it will not have a sludge pool like the old one, and there are several natural barriers between the new site and the north side of town.

Mattox said the high-pressure lines from the old site to the new one were installed months ago and the new pools appear to be nearly ready.

About half the funding is a grant from the U. S. Department of Agriculture and the other part is a loan that is to be repaid with utility user fees.

The new plant is only supposed to handle sewage. Water from storm drains should be going into ditches instead, but Mattox said the volume at the current plant does increase after a heavy rain so there is some groundwater getting into older lines.

A side benefit of the new plant is that it will allow removal of the black sewer pipe that crosses the Tallahatchie River just south of the Bankhead Street bridge and has been considered an eyesore.

The new plant is at the end of CR 324, which is off CR 115, formerly known as North Street before the Tallahatchie River bridge on the street was closed.

This is an aerial view of the plant earlier this year.

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