Water plan

RK&K has won the contract to design the water and sewer system, said Director of Public Works Wayne Stephens.  Wednesday’s presentation at the work session was a chance for supervisors to touch base with the engineering firm, get a glimpse at its preliminary suggestions, and offer feedback.

Jeff Kapinos of RK&K discussed water options for a Zion Crossroads system.  The Department of Corrections (DOC) in Fluvanna has 75,000 gallons per day (GPD) of capacity for Fluvanna County to use.  Supervisors could also consider pursuing arrangements with Aqua Virginia at the Lake Monticello plant or with Albemarle, though those choices come with some drawbacks, Kapinos said.  The James River Water Authority would be a good long-term option, he continued.

Sewer options start with the DOC, which has a capacity of 100,000 GPD – expandable to 125,000 GPD – for Fluvanna County’s use.  Other choices include the Louisa County Water Authority at Spring Creek, Glenmore at Albemarle, Aqua Virginia at Lake Monticello, or an alternate wastewater treatment plant with land treatment.  Long-term options would need to include some sort of wastewater treatment plant, Kapinos said.

When discussing demand Kapinos presented scenarios ranging from 950,000 to 2.5 million GPD, though he noted that the time untill Fluvanna’s Zion Crossroads area achieves build-out flow is unknown. Right now Louisa’s portion of Zion Crossroads uses about 100,000 GPD, Kapinos said.

Kapinos presented a first phase water system with a price tag of about $5 million: $500,000 for one booster pump station, $1.8 million for one elevated storage tank, and $2.7 million for about five miles of water lines.

He also presented a first phase sewer system at a cost of about $3 million: $2 million for over five miles of sewer lines, around $500,000 for up to three pump stations, and around $500,000 for minimal gravity sewer.  He noted that developers may have to install the pump stations and gravity sewer.

Supervisors haven’t decided what course of action to pursue, and Stephens thinks that RK&K will recommend beginning by utilizing the DOC option.  When Supervisor Bob Ullenbruch asked Kapinos for his opinion, Kapinos said he considered the DOC to be a “very workable option.”  It has a good location, it’s a good facility, and it has good rates, he said.

The DOC’s rates are so low, Stephens said, that the county couldn’t construct a system and provide services for cheaper than the DOC.  Though he says the DOC option doesn’t provide enough ultimate capacity, he sees it as a possible first phase.  “Assuming we did go with the DOC,” he said, “you don’t just stop.  We’d continue to build an ongoing overall water and sewer plan.  Whatever option we choose to do it isn’t the only thing that we’ll pursue.”

RK&K will submit its preliminary PER around Jan. 15 and its final PER around March 15.  The firm expects to have preliminary design done around June 1 and final design complete around the beginning of January 2016.  Construction may last from the beginning of March 2016 to the beginning of March 2017, when the new system becomes operational.

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