During the Oct. 26 meeting, the Anamosa City Council got updates on the project to get a new well for the city.
Back in April, the council members selected their preferred site, west of the water treatment plant. The site was on private property and Andrew Marsh, vice president of HR Green, said in discussion with the landowners, the sides were just too far apart on price.
So, the focus moved to the second site.
The second site is located in Remley Woods and it had both advantages and disadvantages. The advantages, Marsh said, were that it was the second closest, meaning less costs for the city to get the water back to the pipe. The property is also owned by the city, which would save them money on acquiring property and the city already owns the 200-foot radius surrounding the site, and need that radius of legal control surrounding any well.
The disadvantages include that it is a wooded site. The land was gifted to the city and would require the cutting down of multiple old trees. Back in April, Marsh said that while the moratorium on cutting down trees in the agreement signed in 1979 had expired, cutting down the trees would violate the spirit of the agreement. So, Marsh said the plan tries to minimize the disruption to the park, including replacing some of the trees that have to be cut down during the construction phase.
While the well site was a little closer than would be preferred to the current well, Marsh felt that could be worked around and they would just have to proceed cautiously.
The need to replace the city’s fourth well, current located across North Williams Street from the proposed site. Rebuilding on the current site is not possible as the well is surrounded by residences. This means the city would not be able to get the necessary 200-foot radius around the well. That well needs to be replaced as the current well is more than 50 years old and some of the infrastructure hundreds of feet below ground that are past their design life.
“It will fail, eventually, and 50 years is definitely on the high end of the scale,” Marsh said.
The plan includes a 20’x30’ building for electrical purposes and, for now, a gravel road to allow trucks to pull in and turn around. Council members discussed the possibility of putting a fence around the building. What kind of fence they wanted, or even if they wanted to do it at all, were up for interpretation, as there are no governmental regulations requiring one.
The possibility of making the building bigger to add some amenities, like restrooms, to the park was discussed.
After moving past the preliminary phase, the plans will be finalized, get needed permits from the Department of Natural Resources, get bids, select a contractor for the project and start construction. Construction on a project like this can take a year, Marsh said. He estimated the new well was about a year and a half out.