Sanitary board seeks next step in sewer upgrade

TYE WARD | Saturday Gazette-Mail

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Charleston Sanitary Board members will consider asking the city to start eminent domain proceedings to acquire 16 easements in the Sherwood Forest subdivision to upgrade sewer system there.

The board will hold a special meeting at 9 a.m. Monday in the mayor’s conference room at City Hall. “It’s something we should have done at our last regular meeting and we just didn’t do it. It fell through the cracks,” said Larry Roller, the sanitary board’s general manager.

If the sanitary board approves the request, it will go to City Council for consideration. Roller said the board wants council to address the matter at their next meeting, on June 16, “to save a couple weeks” of waiting to begin construction. The board is ready to award its contract to replace the subdivision’s pipeline and pumping systems, he said.

The sanitary board needed to obtain 200 easements for the project, which would allow it to work across properties to install the pipeline, Roller said. He called the eminent domain proceedings “a pretty standard process” get the easements. The board has been working to get the easements for about a year, and these 16 are the only ones left.

“We can’t get a hold of the folks or [there are] other extenuating circumstances or flat out refused to honor the easements,” said operations manager Tim Haapala.

The board itself will fund the $5 million project, which replaces the pipeline in the older section of Sherwood Forest, Roller said.

Haapala said that part of the subdivision has sewers “at or beyond their service life,” so all of the sewer lines will be replaced.

Construction at Sherwood Forest will begin in late July or early August, provided the contract is awarded in short order, Haapala said.

Reach Rachel Molenda at or 304-348-5102.

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