Carroll-Boone Water eyes major projects to allow for area's growth

Friday, April 19, 2013

EUREKA SPRINGS -- The Carroll-Boone Water District is looking at some major projects in planning for the next 10 to 20 years by way of its master plan update, presented Thursday by consulting engineers Chris Hall and Brad Hammond of McGoodwin, Williams & Yates.

The projects include running a water line parallel to the existing one, modifying the Green-Berry booster station and making a new line line crossing the Kings River. The district is also looking at the operational and financial impacts of the Highway Department widening Hwy. 62, east of Berryville.

Engineer Brad Hammond of MWY said the report was only preliminary, based on their progress so far, so he did not have costs yet.

He said they had discussed these projects five years ago and had recommended the parallel line, the Kings River crossing, and upgrades to the west side treatment, many of which they have already done.

Using 2010 census data, population projections don't show major growth in Eureka Springs, Berryville or Green Forest, but do show a large increase in Harrison, with also a steady increase in water usage. The trend line for the next 20 years slows a slight increase, he said.

But population is not the best indicator to use in planning, he said. You also have to look at industry.

"Water use in Berryville went down (when population went up by 1,000 in the 2010 census) because Tyson moved its chicken processing to Green Forest," said Hall.

Current combined capacity of the two treatment plants is 18 mgd (million gallons per day), and of the waterline, 12 mgd, although it could actually handle 16 mgd because of the Green-Berry booster station, said Hall. Using the current "peaking factor" to project capacity, Hall said, but it would be at the "ragged edge" of actual needs.

"One change in Harrison could wipe us out."

He said Harrison is already at the point where they can't completely fill some tanks they have because they are in constant use.

"We could get to the point where we can't top off Pine Mountain (tanks, between Eureka Springs and Berryville), which would mean Green-Berry would be running constantly and it could mean higher pumping costs and more wear and tear on the pumps."

Other factors also complicate the construction for future needs, Hammond said, one of which is that the two biggest water users, Green Forest and Harrison, are at the end of the line, so pumping ability and storage are issues.

A parallel line might require purchase of more easement to maintain a safe distance between the two waterlines. Any closer, and blasting for a new line could damage the existing one, he said. Easements would have to be worked out on a case-by-case basis with property owners.

AHTD's Hwy. 62 widening project just east of Berryville will affect the CBWD line as well.

"They want us to put 12 90-degree turns in our line," Hall said, which affects pumping and pressure of the line.

"We would rather move the line and replace it with ductile iron. We would have to buy more easement."

He said CBWD would also need more electricity for pumping. AHTD would need to cost-share the project.

A 20-year projection at a higher peaking factor would add 116,100 linear feet of waterline and modifications to the Green-Berry and Pine Mountain booster stations.

"This transmission line has been in place for 30 years," said Hammond. "It was based on 12 mgd. We are recommending improvements to this transmission line fairly soon."

"Where are we going to get the money to do this?" asked Chairman James Yates. "Do we qualify for federal or state funds?"

Hammond said there is a lot less money for grants now because of the economy. The district could look at the state's revolving loan fund or, worst case, a private bond issue.

He also said MWY's full master plan update will likely cost more than the $25,000 the board budgeted for it, but he couldn't say how much more.

The board directed him to continue with work to about $20,000 and report back.

In other business, the board:

* Approved purchase of parts to replace turbidity meters at both plants, totalling $27,149, dividing the projects to below $20,000 each to avoid competitive bidding, and 20 valve actuators for around $113,000, as long as they are confirmed only available from a single source, which would cancel the need for competitive bids.

* Approved rebates in water costs to the member cities, after a two-year hiatus of no rebates, as follows: $109,500 to Harrison, $62,250 to Green Forest, $51,750 to Berryville and $26,500. The cities are not required to pass these rebates on to customers.

* Approved renewing its insurance with Walker Bros.

* Denied a request from the Grassy Knob Fire Department to access CBWD hydrants. Attorney Dan Bowers said he could find no legal authority entitling such use and that CBWD has a responsibility to protect its water quality for customers.

* Heard MWY and CBWD won an engineering excellence award for the Keels Creek Restoration Project from the American Council of Engineering Companies of Arkansas. The award was presented March 8 at the governor's mansion.

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