Water plant in final design stages

By Gary Scott on January 27, 2015 at 2:18pm

Everything you wanted to know about the new Jacksonville water treatment plant from the curvature of the roof to toilet exhaust was explained last night.

Engineers from Benton and Associates were at a Utility Committee meeting before last night’s City Council meeting, bringing aldermen up to date on the plant, with a full presentation and list of dates between now and 2017, when the new plant on Hardin Avenue is expected to be operational.

Reggie Benton of Benton and Associates says the firm is nearing completion of the final design. There haven’t been a lot of changes, but Benton talks about some of the differences in the plant design from the preliminary details that were first released to aldermen in September.

“As an example, all the pipe layout was completed within a yard of the treatment plant, which really wouldn’t have been noticeable on the surface, but took a lot of effort on behalf of the engineers to complete that design,” says Benton. “It was a lot of things that would be behind the scenes and not readily visible unless you’re directly involved in the design process.”

Benton says the goal is for the new water treatment plant to be a better neighbor to nearby residences than the previous businesses.

“They had routine customer traffic. Not speaking against the businesses that occupied the space before, but we’ll just have a lower traffic in general at the water treatment plant, and we’ll certainly be designing it so the activities are during normal business hours and will not be obtrusive to the neighbors,” he says. “All the lighting will remain on sight, so you won’t have any offsight lighting as a result of this development.”

It was also mentioned during last night’s meeting that the new water plant could serve as an educational tool for schoolchildren who go on field trips.

Benton says the final preparation of bidding documents, which will be submitted to the Illinois EPA to allow for construction permits to be issued, is nearly complete.

“The project schedule is much more concrete than it was previously,” he says. “We plan to advertise for bids in early March so we can then receive bids in late April.”

Formal notice of an award of bids should be given in June, and a notice to proceed with construction should happen in July. Construction is expected to last until late 2016, and the existing water treatment plant should be demolished in early 2017.

More on the presentation

Audio divided into two segments:

Photo album of the Benton and Associates slideshow