Thursday, May 1, 2008

Green Acres Sanitary Sewer Project 5/1/08

Sanitary sewer is a very important city service. It is expensive to handle because it relies on gravity to move it from one place to another. The sewage eventually ends up in our sewer ponds across from the Helena Regional Medical Center on Highway 44. Where the sewage will not gravity flow, it must be pumped. Therefore, we have a series of lift stations that pick the sewage up and push it to another station in line with our sewer ponds. Once the waste makes it to the sewer ponds, it is treated (cleaned up) in accord with federal and state regulations.

The issue on Greenacres was that the concrete pipes which were carrying the waste were worn out. Roots had begun to grow in the lines and cause problems. Another issue was that waste from the lift station on School Road (behind Central High School near Springdale Road) is pumped through a forced main over the hill behind Greenacres to the manhole at the top of the hill on Greenacres and then it flows downhill from Greenacres around and down Valley Drive beyond Food Giant and toward Stringtown Road. Because of the collapsed lines on Greenacres, we were having problems getting the sewage to the sewer ponds. That is why we had Robert's Construction to come in and remedy that problem. Residents probably never noticed a difference in the service even though this is a major project.

Below are some photos from the work being done on Greenacres. Lots of costly heavy equipment is involved here. There is a photo depicting the red laser beam used to keep the appropriate level for the pipes as the 14 foot sections are placed in the ground. Gravel is place below and above the pipes to keep them in place and to permit any spring water to flow around the pipes without causing a problem. The sections of pipe are held together by a black rubber gasket and a soap like sealer. This project should take about a day and a half to two days to complete.

We thank our men and women with the Helena Municipal Water and Sewer Company for the work that they do. We also appreciate the Roberts Company.

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