MIDDLEPORT — Middleport officials are currently planning for a large improvement project for the Middleport water system, which will provide significant water improvements for the village and provide a much better system for now and for residents in the future, stated Mayor Fred Hoffman in a news release.
The proposed project would be funded with a 50 percent grant from the Ohio EPA which has already been approved, other grants from various agencies and with no interest loans to be secured for the balance of the project. The loan would be repaid over the next 40 years.
Costs to residents would range from $5.86 to $7.41 additional charge per month per customer to repay the no-interest loans. The estimated cost of the project is $4.8 million with half of that being provided by the Ohio EPA grant.
“If the project proceeds, I will be recommending that this additional charge be put in a separate fund to only be used for the payment for these improvements,” stated Mayor Hoffman.
In 2019, the village council authorized a $240,000 loan from EPA to be used to hire Choice One Engineers to design the project and obtain the necessary permits from EPA. This design work is almost complete. Soon after the design completion, the village must either proceed with the project or repay the loan over a five-year period with a payment of approximately $48,000 per year. If the project proceeds, the loan will be incorporated in the construction financing package.
The project would include the replacement of over four miles of water lines and service lines. Old transite lines would be replaced as they are no longer recommended for use by the Ohio EPA. Over 275 lead service lines would also be replaced as they are no longer considered as acceptable in village water systems. Old cast iron lines in the downtown area would be replaced, along with lines on South Third which have been a problem for years with numerous breaks and inadequate pressure for fire fighting. Lines in areas with low pressure would be replaced to provide better service to all residents and hopefully obtain another reduction in our fire insurance rates.
This project would also provide water service to a few homes on Bone Hollow Road and would allow areas that our system cold be expanded for possible new customers and additional revenue. This part of the project is looked upon very favorably by the Ohio EPA and would be a good selling point for building in that area.
“This project would go a long way towards keeping our system in good working order for the next 20-30 years and would provide improvements to the system that has been needed for many years and would provide much needed water pressure in many areas in order to have better fire protection,” concluded Mayor Hoffman.
Information provided by Mayor Fred Hoffman.