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Crown Point eyeing new wastewater treatment plant
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Crown Point eyeing new wastewater treatment plant

Crown Point City Hall — Stock

Crown Point City Hall

CROWN POINT — The city is considering installing a new wastewater treatment plant with the ability to treat 2 million gallons of water daily on the southeast side of Crown Point. 

The potential new treatment plant was discussed Wednesday during a presentation at a Crown Point Board of Works meeting.

Al Stong, president of Commonwealth Engineers, Inc., said it's time for the city to move ahead with its downtown interceptor project, but presented another route the city can take to upgrade its wastewater utility. 

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Phase one of the original projects recommended in Crown Point's 2018 wastewater master plan — set to provide for 20-year growth — included installing a disinfection pond at the city's current treatment plant and a downtown interceptor, Stong said. 

"This downtown interceptor allows us to unload some of the flows on the east side, which is becoming overwhelmed and opens that area up for the additional flows that are coming in and provide some relief," Stong said. 

He later added: "Then we had multiple phases afterwards, depending upon your needs." 

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The project's first phase was slated to cost $42.4 million, including construction and nonconstruction costs, with all of the improvements outlined in the 2018 wastewater master plan projected to cost $85 million with inflationary impact, Stong said. 

The potential for a southeast wastewater treatment plant emerged from a second look at master plan projects, Stong said. 

"The reason being is that we were going to spend $80 million on pipe in the ground, and we still had an old treatment plant that was all the way to the north," he noted.

"We thought, well, what if we could get some new infrastructure, put it over to the southeast, and free up some of the flow on the remainder of the system ..."

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A new treatment plant, Stong said, would pull 1 million gallons off the city's current wastewater treatment plant, and give the city an option to potentially, "service others in the south, southeast area. It also opens up opportunity for us to take the county's flow, now that we've pulled 1 million gallons off."

Stong said the new plan cost $96 million, with phase one of the southeast wastewater treatment pant project set to cost $69.9 million.

"You're still performing a lot of the same work. You're doing the same work at the treatment plant. You're putting similar infrastructure in," he said. 

The scope of phase one would grow, Stong noted. The presentation shows phase one would include: installing a downtown interceptor; area improvements to combined sewer overflow (CSO) 004; Greenview, Delaware and southeast regional lift stations and force mains; and the wastewater treatment plant and equalization basin. 

"If we were to put this plant in, it would open up a significant area for potential service," Stong said. 

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The project would span from this year to "well into" 2026, Stong said. 

Stong noted the project, could receive up to $5 million from the State Water Infrastructure Fund, or SWIF, program through the Indiana Finance Authority.   

Crown Point Mayor David Uran said the project would, "improve the quality of life within our current customer base."

"This is really, truly a long-term, 50-year outlook, that we have an opportunity with legacy dollars that could come in once in a lifetime and improve the quality of life of our current customers and improve our neighbors, who are reliant on the quality of life in Crown Point," Uran said. 

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The project comes as the city neas the end of its multimillion water system improvements project, which included, but wasn't limited to, installing two secondary water storage tanks and replacing various water service lines. The project has been five years in the making, Stong said during the July 7 board of works meeting. 

No action was taken to approve the city moving ahead with the new wastewater treatment plant, however, Stong noted the Crown Point City Council utility committee has asked Commonwealth to proceed with schematic design work. 

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South Lake County Reporter

Mary Freda is the South Lake County reporter at The Times. She is a proud Ball State graduate, where she studied news journalism and Spanish. You can reach Mary at mary.freda@nwi.com or 219-853-2563.

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