City’s water project progressing

Published 10:57 am Tuesday, December 21, 2004

By By SPIROS GALLOS / Niles Daily Star
NILES - The City of Niles Board of Public Utilities received an update on the Water System Infrastructure project.
Utilities Department Manager Jim Lehmkuhl informed the board that construction of the pumping station located on Lake Street is coming along, with the foundation for the building being poured and walls of the pumping house taking shape.
The pumping station will draw water from one of the high producing city wells, known as Airport Well, and pump it into what is known as an intermediate pressure district.
An intermediate pressure district is an area where water pressure is considerably lower than typical levels in the city.
With the construction of the Lake Street pumping station and the completion of a new water tower near Carberry Road and Mulder Drive, water pressure levels on the east side of Niles will rise to normal levels, Lehmkuhl said.
One advantage of increased water pressure in that area will be additional fire protection because fire fighters will have a new source of water to draw from.
Also, water mains running from the Airport and Parker wells have been installed. The new water mains will connect the wells to the new water treatment center which will be constructed on Eagle Street near the city utilities streets garage.
Lehmkuhl also updated the board concerning the M-51 Electric Line Relocation project which the city must complete by May 1.
The City of Niles and the Michigan Department of Transportation recently signed a contract for the city to receive up to $400,000 in reimbursement for any expenses incurred by the city for moving power lines away from M-51 from Main to Lake Street.
The city must move powerlines back from the road before Department of Transportation crews come through to widen the road as part of a highway improvement project which will be taking place in Niles next year.
Balos Engineering &Electric Company, the firm which the city has contracted to move the electric lines, has given the city an approximate estimate for the cost of labor for the project, which is estimated to take three months, of $100,000.
The city has put a cost of materials for the line movement at about $150,000 for utility poles, wiring and cables.