By BRIAN SMITH
Work on extending wastewater service to the Western Loop area south of Ranger Highway in Weatherford continues with design approval for a new lift station in the area.
Municipal Utility Board members approved the project during a Thursday meeting. Director of Water/Wastewater Utilities James Hotopp said in a staff report there are no centralized wastewater facilities in the area. Without them, development along the loop will be limited to large lots.
Having items like a lift station will allow for more development and economic growth along the Ric Williamson Memorial Highway and also allow the area to be served by the city’s wastewater system. The board approved working with engineering firm Teague Nall & Perkins on designing the lift station and related infrastructure at a cost of $229,700.
In a related item, a professional services contract with Baird Hampton & Brown for design of a waterline to serve the Western Loop and Deerfield subdivision was also approved.
Hotopp said all present development along the road is served by ground water owned by the city. Availability of ground water is limited and expected to decline over the next several years. The program calls for the design of 17,160 linear feet of water line. Monies for the design project come from a 2006 bond, according to a staff report.
In other news, the drought which has plagued the area for the last two years is expected to continue this summer.
Meteorologist Courtney Jalbert with the Tarrant County Groundwater District spoke to the Weatherford Municipal Utility Board Thursday morning about the effects of the drought on local reservoirs and water systems. She said the last time Texas wasn’t in some form of drought was in late 2010 after Tropical Storm Hermin. Now 97 percent of the state is in some form of drought, with 18 percent of the state being in exceptional, or the worst, drought.