Colonie water tower plan moves ahead

In the last meeting of 2007, Thursday, Dec. 20, Colonie town board members approved a memorandum of understanding between the town and the Albany County Airport Authority for funding to cover the replacement and removal of municipal water towers at Utica Avenue.

Until the funding was made available, the town was legally unable to put the project out to bid. The Latham Water Department will contract the work out, while the funding will come by way of federal, state and Airport Authority dollars.

The hope is that by fall or winter of 2009, the two Utica Avenue towers will come down while remedial engineering and construction associated with the new water mains will begin in spring.

We'll hire contractors. We're in the progress of hiring engineers. We'd like to do the engineering now so when the nice weather rolls around we can bid the project and get started, said John Frazer, superintendent of Latham Water Department.

So far, the work entails a new 36-inch water main from the Latham Water plant to Sparrowbush Road, a more than two and a half mile stretch. The town has yet to wrap necessary easements on privately held properties where the line would run. But those are under way, as is the engineering for the project, said Frazer.

Other construction includes a second 24-inch main to run along Loudon, Crumitie and Fairview roads, and a new tree-level water tank at the Sanderson site in Loudonville and pump station, also at the Sanderson site.

The town has to decide on a steel or cement tank to replace the three that will come down. The town will also remove the water tower at Ross Court. The removal is not part of the airport funding, said Frazer.

Last estimates put the cost of the airport-funded construction at about $8 million.

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