Water Engineering - News

Construction starts on Villa Grove Water Treatment Plant

Construction on Villa Grove, Illinois, $4.6 million water treatment plant started in May 2018. All the underground piping has been relocated. Leander Construction has poured the foundation footings for the south, east and north sides of the building and the base of the backwash tank and are preparing to pour the walls for the backwash tank. In addition, crews have cleaned and test pumped the east well to size the final pump to be installed as part of the upgrades.

"Residents are excited to see the progress of the treatment plant," said Fehr Graham project manager Andy Kieser. "They have waited awhile for this project to come to fruition and now it's becoming a reality."

The city of Villa Grove received some good news from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency about its water treatment plant loan.

The EPA offered Villa Grove an interest rate of 1.32 percent on its $4.6 million, 30-year loan and maximum principal forgiveness of $500,000.

"It's a big win for us," said Villa Grove Mayor Cassandra Eversole-Gunter.

Andy Kieser, project manager at Fehr Graham, said the low-interest rate and loan forgiveness means the city won't increase water rates, which means residents won't have to pay more for water. The average user will pay $47 a month for water service.

"We are excited for Villa Grove to receive this news," said Kieser, who helped the city apply for the loan. "The city will be able to build a water treatment plant that will serve the community of 2,400 for 25 years and beyond. It will also allow the city flexibility for future projects."

Villa Grove hired Fehr Graham to design a water treatment plant to replace the city's plant that was built in the late 1930s. Because of its age, the water system cannot be operated and maintained in a manner that will ensure a safe and adequate quantity of clean water.

The major issues are:
  • Flooding damage.
  • Corroded pump impellers.
  • Obsolete scrubber that removes hydrogen sulfide.
  • Cloudy water in the treatment basin.
  • Gravity filters losing media.

The plant, which sits in the 200 block of North Main Street, is well beyond its useful service life, and it is more cost-effective to replace the plant rather than repair it. The new water treatment plant will be built across the street from the old plant and will include:
  • Updraft forced aerator with detention tank.
  • High-service pumps that will carry water from the detention tank to the pressure filters.
  • Ion exchange softener.
  • Distribution system.
  • Storage facilities.
  • Liquid chlorine and fluoride treatment.
  • Building to house process equipment.
  • Submersible pump well fittings.
  • Construction should begin this month and is expected to be finished by April 2019.

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