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Flowery Branch to buy 'temporary fix' to boost sewer pump capacity on Martin Road

POSTED: March 3, 2008 5:00 a.m.
Flowery Branch City Council approved the $12,000 purchase of a new 10,000-gallon storage container Wednesday to ease the strain that development has placed on a sewer pump station on Martin Road.

Recent commercial development on Martin Road in Flowery Branch and on Winder Highway in Oakwood has placed a burden on the Flowery Branch-owned sewer pump station near Martin Road Elementary, Flowery Branch City Manager Bill Andrew said.

"It’s a temporary fix to accommodate the development we’re seeing currently, but we’re doing a study to see what we need to accommodate the sewer basin," Andrew said. "Mostly we’re just getting the Kroger and the Ingles to tie on (to the sewer line)."

Flowery Branch City Council voted to approve the holding container purchase in anticipation of more development on Martin Road and Winder Highway while engineers explore two more permanent solutions to the area’s sewer situation.

Andrew said Flowery Branch has options. Long-term solutions could include constructing larger main lines along Martin Road that would bypass the inadequate pump near Martin Road Elementary, or the city could connect the existing sewer line on Martin Road to a new line at the proposed Exit 14 interchange that could begin construction in about seven years.

He added that the Exit 14 interchange solution would require the new line to be built under Interstate 985, but would not stifle interstate traffic flow in the construction process.

Andrew said only one-third of the Flowery Branch sewer and water treatment plant’s 1 million gallons of capacity is in use, but the remainder has already been doled out to incoming businesses as well as to Oakwood, which holds 250,000 gallons of capacity in the Flowery Branch facility.

Currently, the small Flowery Branch pump station can process 300 gallons per minute, and the larger Hall County pump station farther up the Martin Road sewer line can pump 1,300 gallons of sewage per minute, Andrew said.

According to Andrew, the existing and anticipated development on the two thoroughfares has highlighted the disparity in the two pumps’ sewer processing rates, and the 10-foot by 16-foot storage cylinder will store 10,000 gallons at a time to allow the smaller Martin Road lift station to efficiently move effluent down the line.

Andrew said Hall County will fully reimburse Flowery Branch for the container purchase because it is the large county-owned pump station that has caused the imbalance on the Martin Road line.

The council also voted to replace Flowery Branch Development Authority member Dow Douwsma, who is moving to Chicago, with former Flowery Branch City Councilman Jim Herold. Herold will serve on the city’s development authority until August, when four of the seven seats on the authority will open for new two-year appointments.


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