New Atlantic treatment plant not ready to come on-line just yet


April 19th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The City of Atlantic isn’t quite ready to make the switch from the old wastewater treatment plant to its new, $14-million dollar facility, as it was announced two weeks ago. On April 4th, City Administrator Doug Harris told the City Council the new facility would come on-line for testing last Sunday (April 15th), and a switchover to the new plant would be made soon thereafter, once any problems were worked out.  Harris said Mother nature played a role in delaying Sunday’s expected testing process, but a couple of the City’s Wastewater Treatment Plant employees were up to the task of making sure additional problems weren’t created.

He says the employees worked diligently when lightening strikes took out some of the controls, on top of having heavy rain which produced a storm surge in the system. In the past, such as surge would have resulted in the facility bypassing the runoff into the East Nishnabotna River, without having been treated first. The employees prevented that from occurring.

Harris said there are some issues with the planned switchover to the new plant, but that “They’re all being handled expeditiously and professionally.” He says the start-up is not expected to occur next Tuesday, April 24th. After it that, it will take at least 10-days altogether before a complete switchover from the old-to-the-new plant is made on May 7th or 8th.

Plans to replace the old wastewater treatment plant began in 2006, after it was determined the current, nearly 70-year old facility could not handle a significant storm water run-off, and, because the D-N-R had required the city to build a million-gallon retention basin, or lagoon. The City opted instead, to build a new, more modern plant.