SENECA FALLS — After years of considering options, the Town Board voted 4-1 Jan. 5 to install a new sewer line from the Kingdom Road pump station on the south side of West Bayard Street.
That route for the new, larger sewer line was one of four options considered by the board since the project was proposed in 2016.
The new line will replace a 1960s-era line from the pump station that helps convey wastewater that comes down a sewer line on Route 414. That waste is then conveyed easterly through the former village of Seneca Falls to the wastewater treatment plant on Seneca Street on the Cayuga-Seneca Canal.
Town engineers from Barton & Loguidice said the Route 414 line needs to be upgraded and enlarged to handle increased flow from a new sewer district on Route 318 in the towns of Junius and Tyre and from the del Lago Resort & Casino in Tyre, plus development in the Routes 414 and 318 area. That line also handles wastewater from Waterloo Premium Outlets and Seneca Meadows landfill.
The motion was made by board member Doug Avery, with a second by Supervisor Mike Ferrara.
Board member Steve Churchill suggested repairing the existing line might be a better option, noting that Route 318 development has not happened as rapidly as many thought. He said he’d like to see evidence the current line is overwhelmed.
“The flow is overtaxing the pump station and the sewer lines when there is a heavy rainfall,” Avery replied.
Churchill said relining the inside of the sewer pipe could prevent stormwater inflow and infiltration.
Engineer Peter Baker said the line is old and on its last life, eroding from the inside.
“We’re not sure how long it will last,” he said. “It could be very costly to repair the line and there could be more development on Routes 318 and 414 and if so, they likely would not have the capacity to handle new users.”
The estimated cost is $2.5 million. It would be paid for by borrowing, grants, sewer fund reserves or a combination of those sources.
Churchill said he would like to know where the money would come from before he voted, but Ferrara said, “We don’t know now what grants we can get.”
“I say, let’s get moving. There is a lot that has to happen before this line is installed,” Avery said.
Churchill said the town has issued a Request For Proposals for engineering services with a decision to be made in February on which engineering firm to hire. He suggested tabling the matter until then but did not receive a second.
Voting for the south side of West Bayard Street for the new line were Ferrara, Avery, David DeLelys and Dawn Dyson. Churchill was the sole no vote.
The board also announced it will meet with the special advisory committee formed in 2020 to study the feasibility of having a town manager position created. That meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. today at the Community Center.
The 15-member committee is headed by former Seneca Falls school superintendent Gerald Macaluso.