Expanded Sandy Hook Sewage Pumping Capacity Planned

July 20, 2018 | Newtown Bee

Water & Sewer Authority (WSA) members are reviewing equipment improvements planned to be made at the Sandy Hook Center sewage pump station at a 5-A Glen Road so that the facility can meet the wastewater-handling demands of an increasing number of sanitary sewer users in Sandy Hook.

The pump station is one of four such stations used in the central sewer district. The other pump stations are located on Hanover Road, Taunton Lake Drive, and Baldwin Road.

Fred Hurley, town public works director, told WSA members July 12 that the two pumps at the Sandy Hook facility need to be replaced with pumps that have a higher flow capacity. The pump station is located in a small, nondescript masonry building set well back from the street along the west side of Glen Road.

WSA members initially discussed the need for expanded pumping capacity at an April session. Mr Hurley said the pump replacements need to be made soon to avert the prospect of sewage overflows due to the existing equipment not being able to meet high wastewater flows.

An expanded pumping capacity would handle the additional flows that would be created by proposed multifamily construction known as Hunters Ridge at 79 Church Hill Road, planned multifamily construction known as Riverwalk along the west side of Washington Avenue, and requested sewage disposal for historic mills that have been converted into office buildings at 27 Glen Road and 75 Glen Road.

Mr Hurley said he expects the town’s consulting civil engineers, Fuss & O’Neill, to provide the WSA with technical information on installing higher capacity pumps at pump stations. He expects that the town will need between 25 and 30 percent increased pumping capacity there to handle the increasing wastewater flows. The existing sewer mains connected to the pump station are sufficiently large for larger capacity pumps, he said.

He recalled several incidents that taxed the pump station’s wastewater handling capacity, including a situation in which the water in Newtown High School’s swimming pool was discharged into the sewer system and then flowed through the pumps at the pump station.

Mr Hurley said he expects that by the WSA’s August 9 meeting, Fuss O’Neill will present a cost estimate for two new pumps, plus procedures on making such an equipment changeover.

The Fuss & O’Neill engineering study to be prepared at a cost of $4,370 will address topics including hydraulics calculations, a review of data on extreme wastewater flow events, pump performance data, and how to best reduce peak wastewater flows to the Sandy Hook pump station.

Due to the varied topography of the central sewer district, there are gravity-powered sewers and pressurized sewers. Gravity sewers allow wastewater to drain downward to pump stations where the wastewater is then pressurized and directed upward via force mains to the sewage treatment plant at Commerce Road.

The town built the central sewer system in 1997 at the urging of state environmental officials to resolve longstanding groundwater pollution problems caused by many failing septic systems.

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