August 30, 2013

LMU: East side needs more water

Ideas include enhancing distribution lines, using storage tanks.

by Mitchell Kirk

---- — The Water, Wastewater, Stormwater Department at Logansport Municipal Utilities is exploring ways to distribute water more efficiently throughout the city after switching to a well system earlier this spring.

The city switched to a well system after after determining the $6 million to $8 million to bring its water treatment plant in line with new federal regulations would be too costly.

Jim Jackson, manager of the water, wastewater, stormwater department, told Utility Service Board members earlier this week that difficulties were arising in distributing water throughout the city on the new well system, particularly to the city’s east side.

“As the community grew on the east side of town, it became more difficult to get water out there,” he said.

Jackson went on to say because the city’s two main water transmission lines are not connected, all of the distribution has had to be done through smaller lines.

Jackson then offered several suggestions on how the city could go about improving water distribution throughout the city.

Using a major river crossing downtown to connect the city’s two distribution areas was one of these suggestions.

Pumping water from the department’s 4-million-gallon storage tank on the north side of town would enhance these efforts further, Jackson said.

“There are a lot of transmission lines tied into that system,” he said.

Elevating the water tower at Tower Park to give it more storage capacity for water to be pumped into transmission lines would help as well, Jackson continued, adding that elevating the tower would cost about half the price of building a new one.

Jackson said he would have a better idea on costs for the projects if and when they are decided on.

Before the federally unfunded mandate, the treatment plant at Riverside Park treated water from the Eel River since 1954. LMU decided to keep the facility open to operate its offices there that hold labs, records and communications services.

It will also remain open for bulk water sales and water storage. Jackson said the facility can be used as a booster pumping station to apply additional pressure and water to lines when needed.

Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or