Water pollution avoided with new Lewisburg pipeline

Friday, October 21, 2011

By Clint Confehr

Senior Staff Writer

Construction plans are ready for a pipeline to Craig Moore Road residents whose well water became unusable this summer.

And Lewisburg Water and Wastewater Superintendent Kenneth Carr anticipated the department would call for bids on the construction contract next week.

Nine dwellings on Craig Moore Road north of Mooresville Highway had water wells go bad for undetermined reasons. A state geologist said he believes the source is the city's old landfill leaking soiled water. Some residents suspect road construction blasting shifted rock formations and that allowed such water to flow into their wells.

Regardless of the cause, those residents who live beyond the city line went to the city water utility asking for city water service. The water board applied for a state grant, got it, and steps are now being taken toward construction.

A $43,000 grant was awarded to Lewisburg from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, according to discussion among city officials during this month's city council meeting. The project could cost $86,000. The other half of the anticipated cost, $43,000, is to be split between the city's general fund budget controlled at City Hall and the water utility budget controlled by the Water and Wastewater Board which oversees a separately-chartered entity: the utility.

"The design plans should go to TDEC this week," Carr said. "We're going to call for bids while the designs are being reviewed at TDEC.

"The bid call could be sought starting next week, or as soon as I can get the specs to advertise," he said.

While nine dwellings were affected, according to residents of Craig Moore Road who spoke out in July, Carr now reports, "I don't think there are going to be but five new customers."

The utility mailed announcements to the residents along Craig Moore Road.

"We sent out 20-something letters and got five back," Carr said.

There were concerns that the pollution could have affected wells further north on Craig Moore Road. Apparently, that's not the case.

"We have also received the water tests back from beyond where we planned to stop the pipeline and they've proved to be good," Carr said.

The pipeline is expected to be 3,200 feet long.