City dedicates new plant
The city of Basehor will begin a new era of growth and development as the new wastewater treatment facility comes online.
During a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday, July 31, city officials, engineers, and Basehor residents were offered a first look at the expandable plant, which will replace a two-lagoon system used previously.
City Superintendent Gene Myracle said there are still a few minor glitches to work out before sewage will start flowing into the $5 million facility.
Construction of the facility began in July 1999. City officials said the idea of bringing a wastewater treatment plant to the city went as far back as 10 years ago.
There have been several structural and design changes to the plant since the beginning of construction, and the original $3-million price tag went up considerably, although City Council member Chris Garcia said the plant was worth the trouble.
"It was worth it. It is always worth it when you can get a state of the art type facility to help further growth of the community," he said. "It's a better place for the sewage to flow."
The decision to build the plant was made because of growing problems with the lagoon system and because the Kansas Department of Health and Environment was also going away from lagoons, city officials said.
Although the cost of the plant was higher than the city would have liked, BG Consultants inspector Jon Carlson said Basehor got a good deal.
"It is a really good plant, a really good plant for a real fair dollar value," Carlson said.
Officials said the plant will give the city a chance to develop both residentially and commercially. All future developments will tie into the facility as well as the majority of the existing residences.
Basehor Mayor Bill Hooker said the plant was a welcome addition and would undoubtedly benefit the city in the future.
"To me, this is something that I had been advocating 25 years ago," Hooker said. "It will help attract future commercial development and more rooftops. This and the interceptor line are the keys in developing the city for the future."
The interceptor line Hooker spoke of is a proposed project that would help the city in obtaining more users for the wastewater treatment facility.
The interceptor line would run from the treatment facility to Kansas Highway 24/40 and tie in with a line from developments south of the highway. There has also been talk of annexing property south of the highway in the future.
The facility is currently in phase one, with approximately 569,000 gallons a day pumping into the plant. Project engineer Pat Cox said in the final phase, the plant would be able to handle more than two million gallons a day.
The facility was designed so that each component at the plant could be doubled, thus expanding the plant to as much as four times it's original size.
It is also fully automated and can be run during power outages, city officials said.
"This is a very successful, state of the art facility," Cox said. "It will be a tremendous asset to the city of Basehor."