Town of Chapin awards waste water plant contract

Chapin, SC (Paul Kirby) The government of the Town of Chapin awarded a contract to construct their new waste water treatment plant to M.B. Kahn Construction at their meeting on Wednesday night. In total, the contract represents an outlay of approximately $13,798,000 for the new facility.

According to the town’s Utilities Director Andy Metts, the town has obligated capacity far above what its current plant can handle. The old plant can service 4,000 sewer taps while the new one will be able to service 8,000, essentially doubling the capacity.

The town has known for many years that they would have to make the upgrades. They have graciously provided areas well outside the town limits with sewer service for more than a decade and have lines extended out toward Timberlake Plantation and other communities that rely on them for sanitary sewer service. In many areas around Lake Murray, red clay and rocks make septic systems unreliable and impractical.

According to Metts, DHEC has also made changes in their standards that have forced all sewer providers to make upgrades if they haven’t already done so already. The town currently has an operating aerated lagoon system. This type of system will not meet DHEC’s new requirements to treat to higher limits before discharging into rivers and creeks according to Metts. “The new plant that the town is constructing will meet or exceed those new limits as required by DHEC,” Metts said Thursday.

The cost of the new facility will be financed through the state’s Revolving Fund, a common method of financing these types of projects. Chapin’s loan is set to be repaid over 30 years. The town received a very low interest rate after the state reviewed the town’s finances and debt service repayment plan. When towns and cities are struggling financially, or have a poor history of repaying its debts, the interest rates are set at a higher percentage, just as they would be if an individual with poor credit were attempting to finance and buy a home.

Metts said the construction of the new plant will begin in early 2018. It is being constructed on Holly Oak Lane off Crooked Creek Road adjacent to the existing facility. It is expected to take approximately 18-months to complete and bring on-line.

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