Drain, sewer improvements approved in Thomaston

By Beth A. Birmingham | Aug 12, 2014
Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham John Fancy, standing, explains the financing details of the upcoming improvements to the clean water drains and sewer system in Thomaston at a special town meeting Aug. 11.

Thomaston — Construction on the new Wadsworth Street Bridge and sewer and clean water drain upgrades are slated to begin next month.

Less than 10 residents voted to approve funding for the improvements at a special town meeting Aug. 11.

The two projects are in conjunction with Maine Department of Transportation improvements to the area. The estimated time for completion of all projects is two years.

Below is information provided by John Fancy, superintendent of the town's Pollution Control Department:

Main Street

MDOT intends to reconstruct Main Street from the Warren Bridge to Route 131 south by removing the existing concrete base and asphalt surface, constructing a conventional gravel base with a bituminous pavement surface, installing a storm drain system, filling in the existing ditches and constructing new sidewalks on one or both sides of the new road (from Ridge View to Pine Street).

This work will likely damage the 100-plus-year-old pipes under Main Street that currently provide drainage for the cellar drains, sump pumps, roof drains, etc. from many houses. Upgrading these lines now will avoid digging up the new road in the future.

The first part of this work will be a replacement for the clean water drain from Beechwood Street to Pine Street on the north side of Main Street and down Pine Street to Gleason Street. This project is planned to begin in September and be completed by the end of the year.

The town needs to replace the 100-year-old sanitary sewer that serves several houses near Kossuth Street and the equally old clean water drains that serve a number of the houses on the north side of Main Street in this area. This work is scheduled for the spring of 2015 and is planned to be done before the MDOT project to rebuild Main Street that will begin in early fall 2015.

Wadsworth Street Bridge

MDOT will be replacing the existing bridge beginning in October 2014 with a new one to be located just upstream. The existing bridge has the sanitary sewer that serves Brooklyn Heights connected to it.

Since MDOT will be taking down the old bridge as soon as the new one is finished, the town plans to hang a new sanitary sewer main from the new bridge.

Project costs

The engineering cost estimate including construction and other expenses are: clean water drains (Main Street), $503,050; clean water drain outfall pipe, $352,850; sanitary sewers, $186,100; and Wadsworth Bridge sewer, $354,000 for a grand total of $1,396,000.

Financing

The USDA’s Rural Development agency will provide Thomaston with a loan/grant package of a $1 million low interest loan and $396,000 in grant funds. About 28.6 percent of the funding would be a grant.

The repayment on a $1 million loan would be about $53,770 per year. However, in 2016 a loan taken out in 2003 will be paid off freeing about $23,000 to use to repay the new loan.

Loans for sewer work from Rural Development must be repaid by the sewer users and with about 960 users the cost of sewer service would go up an average of about $32 per year for each user. The current charge is about $360 per year per user. This would increase to $392 per year.

Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at bbirmingham@courierpublicationsllc.com.

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Staff Profile

Beth Birmingham
Staff Reporter
594-4401 ext. 125
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Beth rejoined Courier Publications' news staff in February 2013. She previously worked at The Courier-Gazette from 1981 to 1990.

Her coverage area includes Warren, Union, Friendship, Waldoboro, Washington, and Thomaston and RSU40.

Beth has a passion for photography, and a degree from the University of Maine at Augusta, in affiliation with the Maine Photographic Workshop in Rockport.

Aside from photography, Beth enjoys running and walks along the waterfront, as well as other outdoor activities. She has a daughter, Claire, who is 14.

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