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City considering reclamation in treatment plant expansion
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Among other potential benefits, the planned expansion of Richmond Hill’s wastewater treatment plant eventually could provide treated, urban reuse water, or reclaimed water, for irrigating some residential and commercial landscapes.

That scenario was part of a discussion on Friday at City Hall about the $22 million plant expansion. Attendees at the meeting included City Manager Mike Melton, Mayor Harold Fowler, City Council members Marilyn Hodges and Van Hunter, officials from H+K Engineering Group of Savannah and a few members of the public.

Melton said the plant expansion probably will begin this spring or summer. The work could be finished in early 2014.

The 500-acre, all-natural wastewater treatment facility near Sterling Creek was built in 1997 and doubles as a wildlife sanctuary. But it has been operating at or near capacity, and it was responsible for a number of spills last year in which treated wastewater exceeding discharge limits flowed from the plant’s wetlands into Elbow Swamp.

The facility was designed to treat 1.5 million gallons of wastewater per day and has been treating 1.35 million gallons per day, said Michael Poulios, from H+K Engineering.

To catch up with the city’s growth, officials plan to expand the plant so it can treat 4 million gallons per day. Of the new total, 3 million gallons will be discharged to Elbow Swamp and Sterling Creek – which connects with the Ogeechee River - and 1 million gallons will be used as reuse water for the community.

For more, pick up a copy of the March 30 edition of the News.

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