Lowell officials to meet with landowner on water needs

2012-08-13T21:00:00Z Lowell officials to meet with landowner on water needsMELANIE CSEPIGA Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
August 13, 2012 9:00 pm  • 

LOWELL | The Town Council appeared Monday to want more information in its quest for increased water capacity before spending any money.

During a work session Monday, the Lowell board seemed disinclined to pay $37,200 to Commonwealth Engineering for a feasibility study at the municipal well field before hearing from its neighbor, Ron Bergstrom.

The council cannot vote or make official decisions during a work session, according to state law.

Lowell Director of Public Works Greg Shook was asked to arrange a meeting with Bergstrom, president of Saco Industries Inc., about the well field. Councilmen Donald Parker, D-3rd, and Edgar Corns, R-5th, will sit in on the meeting.

Bergstrom owns acreage that includes an abandoned quarry that's now a lake adjacent to the town's well field.

Town leaders have known for a number of years that the 120-acre well field south of Lowell on Colfax Avenue will not be adequate for the future and other water sources to supplement it should be examined.

The feasibility study would determine how much water would be delivered through sand trenching on the water utility acreage.

"We don't know how much we can get out of the sand trenches until the study is done," Shook said.

Council President Phillip Kuiper, D-4th, said he has been contacted by Prairie Group, which is planning a second quarry south of Lowell. Its owners and the landowner are amenable to discussions with the town, he said.

Previous efforts to tap into water as a byproduct of a quarry operation were unsuccessful when the landowner balked.

Last year, the plant treated 297 millions gallons of water from the seven wells the town now has.

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