Engineering report on regional water system under review

Engineering report on regional water system under review

Members of Carlinville’s Water Ad Hoc Committee met Oct. 19 to hear a presentation from representatives from MECO Engineering Company explaining the results of a study done on the feasibility of a regional water system.

As the meeting began, Mayor Deanna Demuzio announced the addition of two more members to the committee, Marsha Crane (not in attendance) and Richard Oswald. They join current committee members Randy Bilbruck, George Cerar, Tim Coonrod, Brian Mitchell and Dick Mottershaw. Alderman Beth Toon, Public Works Director Tim Hasara and Zoning Administrator Steve Parr were also in attendance.

The project’s preliminary engineering report was presented by MECO Vice President Max Middendorf and geologist Jane Rushford. The study was funded through a grant Carlinville received from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development.

Middendorf explained that the reason for doing the study was, after an assessment of Carlinville’s current water supply, more information was needed to see what alternatives exist to supplement, replace or improve the city’s water supply. As part of the initial evaluation, which began more than three years ago, a look was taken at the condition of the current plant, the maintenance and long-term operating costs of the lake, and the issues associated with treating surface water.

As part of the assessment, Middendorf told the group an effort was made to determine if there was a water source that could meet Carlinville’s needs. The assessment included a look at capital costs, including infrastructure, as well as year-to-year costs.

“We also looked at the philosophical change in water supply — going from a surface supply to a ground water supply. The rationale there is the cost of production and what the regulatory issues that are inherent in treating ground water versus surface water. We were able to do a yearly life cycle cost analysis for each of those scenarios. We wanted a common denominator, so we looked at what is the current usage rate for the Carlinville. We boiled that down annually into per 1,000 gallons to come up with a per 1,000 gallon rate we could compare everything against. In doing that, what appeared to be the most viable option was a ground water source in the Illinois River bottoms,” Middendorf explained.

Although research was done on water sources that are closer in an effort to reduce infrastructure costs, Middendorf reported that, according to the Illinois State Hydrologist, they could not find an aquifer with enough capacity to sustain Carlinville in its driest year.

Once the Illinois River aquifer was determined to meet the criteria for an alternative for Carlinville, Middendorf studied what water systems currently use the aquifer and what costs are involved with treating the water.

According to Middendorf, once word got out that a study was being done for Carlinville, engineers representing other communities contacted MECO with interest in becoming part of the project, which expanded the effort into the possibility of a regional project.

Currently, Carlinville, along with the city of Jerseyville, Jersey County Rural Water Company and the Fosterburg Water District have expressed interest in the regional water system.

The preliminary engineering report (PER) is based on a 30-year build-out plan for each of the four entities. Consideration was give the each of the entities’ existing infrastructure that could contribute to the project. It was also noted that other communities or water districts could join the project either during construction or after the project has been completed.

The PER provided several alternatives with a recommendation for option 2B.

Alternate #1 – Central Illinois Regional Water Supply. A regionalized system to serve a larger area using the existing and expanded Jerseyville well site, a new 10 million gallons per day (MGD) treatment plant, one million gallon elevated water storage and distribution of finished water from a shared water supply and treatment process. Alternate #1 reflects a proposed distribution of water with a peak deliver rate of approximately 8,600 gallons per minute (GPM) of finished water from the treatment facility. Construction cost: $72,416,750. Total project cost: $91,837,000. Wholesale cost per 1,000: 100 percent loan, $4.83; 75 percent loan/25 percent grant, $4.02; 50 percent loan/grant, $3.21.

Alternates #2A, #2B, #2C – Central Illinois Regional Water Supply.

Alternate #2A: A regionalized system to serve four entities using the existing Jerseyville well site, a new six MGD treatment plant, one million gallon elevated water storage and distribution of finished water from a shared water supply and treatment process. Alternate #2A reflected a proposed distribution of water with a peak deliver rate of approximately 4,600 GPM of finished water from the treatment facility. Construction cost: $56,977.750. Total project cost: $72,883,000. Wholesale cost per 1,000: 100 percent loan, $3.96; 75 percent loan/25 percent grant, $3.34; 50 percent loan/grant, $2.70.

Alternate #2B (recommended): A regionalized system to serve four entities using the existing Jerseyville well site, a new six MGD treatment plant and distribution of finished water from a shared water supply and treatment process. Alternate #2B reflects a proposed distribution of water with a delivery rate of approximately 8,600 GPM of finished water from the treatment facility. Construction cost: $59,631,750. Total project cost: $75,697,000. Wholesale cost per 1,000: 100 percent loan, $4.06; 75 percent loan/25 percent grant, $3.41; 50 percent loan/grant, $2.75.

Alternate #2C – A regionalized system to serve four entities using the existing Jerseyville well site, a new six MGD treatment plant and distribution of finished water from a shared water supply and treatment process. Alternate #2C reflects a proposed distribution of water with a peak delivery rate of approximately 4,600 GPM of finished water from the treatment facility. Construction cost: $54,092,750. Total project cost: $68,989,000. Wholesale cost per 1,000: 100 percent loan, $3.83; 75 percent loan/25 percent grant, $3.23; 50 percent loan/grant, $2.63.

Alternate #3 – All entities purchase water from another source. An overview of public water suppliers within a four county area was listed for each entity that distributed or sold finish water. This alternate was considered, but not for the regionalized plan.

Alternate #4 – No improvements. Doing nothing would result in each entity addressing needs and improvements independently and was not considered in this PER.

Those in attendance were provided with a PER summary and six full copies of the report were left with committee members for review.

There will be public meetings scheduled in November, during which time the report will be discussed in detail. Meeting dates and times will be announced.