Woodstock approves water facility upgrade
by Michelle Babcock
April 16, 2014 12:00 AM | 1640 views | 0 0 comments | 22 22 recommendations | email to a friend | print
WOODSTOCK — The city of Woodstock’s Rubes Creek Water Reclamation Facility will get an upgrade in June to replace outdated equipment that treats the incoming wastewater.

The replacement will cost about $1.365 million, and Public Works Director Pat Flood said the added efficiency of the upgrade would save the city thousands of dollars each year spent on power used to run the outdated filtering equipment or membranes, on overtime.

Flood explained during the Monday council meeting that the filters were installed in 2003 and are losing efficiency.

“The membrane actually does the treatment,” he said. “The average life of a membrane is about seven years; we’ve outlived the life of the membrane. We’ve reached a point now where they have to be replaced, we can’t keep up with the flows when it rains.”

The equipment at the Rubes Creek WRF are more than a decade old, and Flood said when heavy rain increases the water flow, extra staff have to work at the facility to keep up with the flow.

“For five days after it rains, they have to stay 24/7 until we get caught up on the flow,” Flood said.

Replacing the membranes would allow the city to spend less on personnel costs, Flood said, and an upgraded aeration system will help save significant energy.

Flood recommended replacing the membranes with similar technology to save money because upgrading to the newer technology would mean more engineering costs to make the facility compatible.

After about seven months of research into various technology options, Flood and other city officials reviewed three different proposals before deciding to recommend the General Electric option.

The council unanimously approved the $1.365 million purchase of GE wastewater treatment upgrades.

Flood said the new membranes are expected to arrive in mid-July and will be installed immediately after the city receives them.

Also at the meeting Monday:

• Woodstock Public Safety Foundation President Scott O’Meara recognized the organization’s donors and presented plaques to many local business and community leaders;

• Police Chief Calvin Moss introduced two new Woodstock Police officers, Max Karneol and Alex Strevel, who were sworn in by Mayor Donnie Henriques;

• Flood thanked local businesses for lending a helping hand during the February snow storm;

• Henriques proclaimed April as Parkinson’s Awareness Month;

• The council unanimously approved a sign variance for RaceTrac, located at 155 Hames Road;

• The council unanimously approved a temporary alcohol license for Wing and Rock Fest;

• The council unanimously approved a temporary alcohol license for the Woodstock Public Safety Foundation springs festival; and

• The council unanimously approved the first reading of an amendment to the city’s temporary signage ordinance, which, if approved on final reading, would allow for businesses to put out a temporary permitted sign for two 30-day periods a year, and one permitted banner for four 15-day periods a year.

The mayor and city council will meet April 21 at 7 p.m. for a work session, and the next meeting is scheduled for April 28 at 7 p.m. at The Chambers at City Center.

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