Latham Water Tanks to be demo'd starting tomorrow

Say goodbye to the checkerboard Latham water tower as it is set to be demolished starting tomorrow, Jan. 20.

The breaking down of the Utica Avenue tanks in Latham are a part of a requirement set by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). It said the structure penetrated the approach surface of the glide path of the Albany International Airport's Runway 28, according to a press release.

\The Latham water tower has long posed a significant obstruction to air traffic. Removing the existing towers will eliminate the obstruction and will result in improved safety for air travelers, aircraft and individuals on the ground, David E. Langdon, Chairman of the Albany County Airport Authority,said in the release.

The demolition is being funded by the FAA along with federal stimulus funds, the Albany County Airport Authority and the New York State Department of Transportation.

Weather permitting, the large tank should be taken down in two weeks and the smaller tanks is expected to be completed in 1.5 weeks. the deconstruction of the two tanks will require crews scarping and vacuuming up the paint, then cutting the seams with blowtorches and removing the sections of the tank piece by piece.

"We are very grateful to everyone at the Albany International Airport for their support," said Town Supervisor Paula Mahan in the release. "While many of us will miss seeing the big checkerboard water tank, we all understand that public safety is paramount. In addition, the town will realize a significant upgrade to it's infrastructure as a result of the demolitions."

The large tank, built in 1964, holds 3 million gallons of water, while the small tank, built in 1931, holds 100,000 gallons.

According to the release,All Industrial Services, Inc. of Youngstown, Ohio, a subcontractor to W.M. Schultz Construction, Inc. of Ballston Spa, will be handling the demolition work. All work will strictly stay within the safety and environmental regulations.

For those who want to watch, the town said you can stop by the large water tank by Utica Avenue tomorrow where a section will be blocked off for safe viewing. ""

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