Engineering costs for filtration at wastewater plant raise eyebrows

By Michael Fitzpatrick

At least one council member got a little sticker shock when she saw the price the city would pay for the design and engineering for a new filtration system at the French Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Councilwoman Roseanne Johnson is the one who questioned the $450,000 Mayor Dave Gillock requested via an ordinance to pay Burgess and Nipple for the engineering of the effluent filtration system at the wastewater treatment plant.

In total, the project will cost approximately $5 million, Gillock told Johnson, when she asked about the $450,000 request. Engineering typically runs 10 percent of a project, Gillock further explained.

Not that Gillock didn’t look twice at the $450,000 price tag.

“I feel your pain,” Gillock said.

Johnson said at first she thought the $450,000 would pay for the entire project.

While North Ridgeville runs the plant, other cities pay for its upkeep through fees. The effluent filtration system has not been replaced since the plant first opened for use in 1975, according to Corey Timko, the plant’s superintendent.

Timko said Burgess and Nipple will essentially be in charge of figuring out who will remove the old filtration system, which used sand and concrete to filter the wastewater, and then build a new on and have it installed.

Much has changed in the wastewater treatment business since the 1970s, when the current system was built, according to Timko. New systems use materials to clean the water, when in the 1970s, it would pass through sand to be cleaned.

Timko said the projects are massive in scope and must be built to run for 40 years, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

“Think about it, “ Timko said. “You never worry about what’s going to happen to the water when you flush your toilet.”

The plant treats 6 million gallons of wastewater a day, according to Timko. The engineering should take nine months to a year, and construction on the new system should begin sometime in 2018, according to Timko.

Council voted 6-0 to pass the ordinance by emergency.

New garbage night

The city announced that beginning in June the universal night for garbage pickup will be on Tuesdays.

The city’s waste collector — Republic/Allied Waste — in the past had split it up into two days, Mondays and Tuesdays.

“Effective the week of June 5, throughout the city, all bulk pickup will remain the first full week of the month. You’ll be receiving a notification in the mail,” Gillock told City Council at its May 15, 2017 meeting.

No medical pot coming to North Ridgeville

City Council voted to accept the committee of the whole report from its May 1 meeting, which “recommended the city adopt a ban on the cultivation, processing and retail sale of medical marijuana” in the city “due to the conflict in federal law and the lack of rules in the state.”

The council will approve an ordinance stating the same, according to Council President Kevin Corcoran.

“It’s already written,” law Director Andy Crites noted during the council meeting.


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