The Langdon City Commission held a special informational meeting with representatives from Moore Engineering: Kent Ritterman, Andrew Askre, and Cavin Berube.
Posted on 12/26/15
By Melissa Anderson
Ritterman began the presentation by stating the purpose of the meeting was to show where Moore Engineering was in regards to their progress for the capital improvement project that the Langdon City Commission gave permission to pursue earlier this fall.
Ritterman stated that the focus thus far in the project was on finding the deficiencies in the city infrastructure and determining where there could be improvements made to the system. The final aspect of the presentation would be how the city would be able to finance the improvement projects through various means.
Askre, who has been in charge of the planning process, has been gathering all the information and plans that the city has to create a map of the city’s sanitation, water, and storm sewers.
The maps created contain information relating to type of pipe installed, year, and size. Askre was unable to create a full schematic of the underground infrastructure due to missing information.
In addition to creating the maps, Moore has also conducted flow testing from various points in the city on the fire hydrants. This was done to calibrate the system for the water model that Moore will create in their computer program. The tests also identified areas that have good flow and areas that might need improvement.
Overall, the schematic that Moore created of the infrastructure improvements that would need to replaced were estimated at $50 million.
Following this information, Moore went over their proposed initial two phase plan to address the worst areas in the City of Langdon. Based on their testing and map schematic the area between 9-12th Avenue and 3rd through 6th Streets will be the first improvements done.
Phase one of the plan would cover about 34 blocks and include some work in the city lagoon.
Much of this outlined area has unacceptable sanitary sewer depths with manholes being less than seven feet and some as shallow as three feet.
While Moore would need to do more research and testing to determine what types of improvement will best rectify the issues, the overall assumption is that the pipes would have to be replaced as they have reached their life expectancy.
Askre noted in his presentation that these proposed phases will be planned out so as not to create a hindrance to any future projects that may need to occur. One way to do that is set aside some funds for televising the systems to create a more accurate data set for questionable areas.
Ritterman and Askre then went over the costs for the two phases. Each phase would cost approximately $5 million with Moore seeking 45 percent grant funding and 55 percent loan from the USDA Rural Development. Based on Moore’s numbers, the user rate increases would be $12 to $13 per phase.
Following Moore’s review of the City of Langdon’s accounts, Askre stated that by using the sales tax and doing a slight increase, the city would just be able to afford the loan payments for the two phase project.
Moore requested that the city give its permission for Moore to submit requests for funding from the USDA Rural Development. The commission approved the request.
Ritterman then moved on to discuss the ongoing water project. Ritterman gave his update from the North Dakota State Water Commission meeting, stating that there seemed to be consensus from that commission that should the city and Northeast Regional Water District (NRWD) work together the funding for the project falls right in line with what the state is promoting.
Ritterman went over the numbers again comparing the two options the city has. Ritterman had no updates regarding the funding for the city alone option as it was sent to the federal level of USDA Rural Development for approval.
Ritterman is hopeful to get the 75 percent grant funding needed for the project. Ritterman stated that because the city falls into the poverty line, Moore is pursuing a new health and sanitation clause.
The biggest hindrance for the city accepting the joint project with NRWD is the buying not being grant-funded. This issue was not addressed at the recent state water commission meeting.