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City of Lincoln
Mayor's Office

2004 Media Releases

November 9, 2004
For More Information Contact:
Gary Brandt, Utilities Coordinator, 441-7967
Diane Gonzolas, Citizen Information Center, 441-7831

Improvements Under Way To City's Wastewater System
Treatment plant and sewer projects total $105.8 million

Mayor Coleen J. Seng today said the $105.8 million in improvements being made to the City’s wastewater system are important projects for the entire community. Seng and City Public Works and Utilities Department staff gave a progress report on projects budgeted for this fiscal year.

“These investments are critical for the protection of public health, the environment and the future of our community,” said Mayor Seng. “To meet more stringent federal and state water quality standards, the City Wastewater Division worked with state officials to establish discharge limits for both of our treatment plants. We are building the facilities the City needs to meet those federal and state standards and to accommodate future growth.”

The $105.8 million investment in the City’s Wastewater system includes $44.9 million in improvements to the trunk sewer and collection system; $35.8 million at the Theresa Street Plant; $23.8 million at the Northeast Treatment Plant; and $1.3 million in miscellaneous projects at the two treatment plants. (See fact sheet.)

The improvements to the trunk sewer and collection system include the replacement and repair of aging collection system infrastructure lines, lift stations and relief trunk lines as well as extensions to the larger lines that collect and transport flow to the City’s two treatment facilities.

The major projects at both treatment plants are construction of the ammonia removal systems, which must be completed by January 2009 to meet state requirements. These projects are required to meet the new discharge permit standards set by the state to protect Salt Creek. The Theresa Street projects include about $4.8 million for the installation of odor control equipment and $1.1 million for repair of the Salt Creek bank near the plant. Other improvements at the treatment plants include grit handling, disinfection systems and bar screen replacement.

Allan Abbott, City Public Works and Utilities Director, said the majority of the improvements are being financed by revenue bonds. Last month, the City Council approved the second in a series of rate increases that establish the financial base for the issuance of the bonds.

A summary of the projects can be found on the City Web site at under the Public Works and Utilities section.

City Of Lincoln Wastewater System Improvements - $105.8 Million

Collection System and Trunk Sewer Construction Projects - $44.9 million

Salt Valley Basin: $21.4 million
Improvements to serve south and southwest Lincoln include a relief trunk sewer from Haymarket Park to Old Cheney Road and projects in the upper southeast and upper southwest Salt Creek.

Beal Slough Basin: $8.7 million
Improvements from 6th Street and Pioneers Boulevard to 27th Street and Highway 2.

Stevens Creek Basin: $6.9 million
Projects include preliminary design and routing of the main trunk sewer system; final design from the Northeast Plant to about 98th and “O” streets; and construction from the Northeast Plant to North 84th Street and Fletcher Avenue.

Little Salt Creek Basin: $2.1 million
Improvements to the North 31st Street lift station.

Oak Creek Basin: $2.1 million
Improvements in northwest Lincoln near the Lincoln Municipal Airport.

West “O” Street: $2.4 million
Extends the trunk sewer from S.W. 40th Street to near N.W. 48th Street and I-80.

Antelope Basin Improvements: $500,000

Selected Replacement and Miscellaneous Improvements: $800,000

Theresa Street Treatment Facility Construction Projects - $35.8 million

Nitrification (Ammonia Removal) and Capacity Improvements: $21.8 million
This project is required by the new federal NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) permit to remove ammonia from the water discharged into Salt Creek to meet discharge limits and to improve the environment of aquatic life. (Scheduled for completion by January 2009.)

Grit Handling Facility Improvements: $5.1 million:
These projects will improve the removal of sand and heavy particulate matter that enter the treatment plants from the typical household waste stream and through water infiltration into the sanitary sewer collection system. The removal of this material extends the life of treatment equipment, improves the overall efficiency of the treatment plants and reduces maintenance and operation costs. (Scheduled for completion by December 2004.)

New Ultra-violet Light Disinfection System: $3.0 million
New federal NPDES permits mandate that residual chlorine be removed from water discharged by the water treatment facilities. The installation of ultra-violet light disinfection systems reduces the use of chlorine for disinfection and additional chemicals used to remove the chlorine after the water has been disinfected. This project reduces the safety hazard of using the chemicals and reduces operation and maintenance costs. (Scheduled for completion by May 2005.)

Odor Control Improvements: $4.8 million
This project installs equipment on a portion of the treatment system, which will reduce odors that are emitted from that facility. (Scheduled for completion by June 2005.)

Salt Creek Bank Repair: $1.1 million
This project addresses the failure of a portion of the Salt Creek levee bordering the plant. This improvement will protect facilities from the potential of flooding, erosion of the bank and potential damage to adjacent facilities. (Scheduled for completion by June 2006.)

Northeast Treatment Facility Construction Projects - $23.8 million

Nitrification (Ammonia Removal) and Capacity Improvements: $13.7 million
(Same as Theresa Street.)

Grit Handling Facility Improvements: $2.6 million
(Same as Theresa Street. Scheduled for completion by June 2006.)

New Ultra-violet Light Disinfection System: $1.7 million
(Same as Theresa Street. Scheduled for completion by January 2005.)

Solids Handling Improvements: $4.7 million
This project replaces the existing equipment and incorporates new technology to process sludge, the byproduct of the biological treatment of sewage. The new equipment removes water from the sludge, which reduces the quantity as well as the difficulty and cost of disposal. (Scheduled for completion by December 2004.)

Bar Screen Replacement: $1.1 million
The bar screens remove material larger than 3/8-inch in diameter from the sewage flow for disposal at the landfill. If this material was not removed, it would cause damage to treatment plant equipment and reduce the efficiency of treatment processes. The existing bar screens are 25 years old and have reached the end of their useful life. (Scheduled for completion by June 2005.)

Northeast and Theresa Street Miscellaneous Projects - $1.3 million

These improvements include repair to the Theresa Street maintenance building, pump replacements and minor system and equipment replacements at both treatment plants.

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