Devola sewer update: Washington County gives informatioin on project

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Washington County is almost halfway done with installing tanks for the Devola sanitary sewer improvements project as shown by the interactive tank installation progress map above, which is available on the project website.

DEVOLA – Washington County has issued a status update on the Devola sanitary sewer improvements project.

Currently the county is working on phase II of the project, which is the installation of tanks at 565 homes.

“The Washington County Commissioners would like to announce that the Devola sewer improvements project is nearing the halfway mark on the estimated 565 home connections,” a media release said.

County Engineer Roger Wright said that about 240 tanks have been installed so far. As of February, installation of the majority of the sewer mains and laterals had been completed and tank installation had begun, according to the project’s website. Wright said they are using a contractor for the tank installation, RDR Utility Services Group, and the county is inspecting each tank after it is installed.

The first phase of the project was a central sewer in east Devola that was connected to the Marietta wastewater treatment plant in 2012. According to the Devola sanitary sewer improvements project general plan, in 2011 the Ohio EPA investigated high nitrate readings in the Devola area and concluded that failing septic systems in Devola were significantly contributing to the nitrate contamination in the groundwater above the drinking water standard level of 10 parts per million (ppm). The Ohio EPA ordered the county to construct a new sewer in Devola in September 2012 and the county was sued by the Ohio Attorney General on behalf of the Ohio EPA in March 2018 for failure to comply.

The county lost the lawsuit in December 2018 and decided not to appeal.

“The project is going well,” Wright said of the installation of the sewer tanks so far.

Wright said he wants residents to know that it is difficult to restore yards in the winter months and that he is asking them to be patient.

Yard restoration will start in April and it will go in the order customers were connected to the sewer main.

He said that the properties in Devola that are part of the project have private septic tanks. Now each residence will be part of a system where all waste will go into the tanks that were installed. The liquids in the tank will be pumped into the Devola lift station and then be treated at the Marietta wastewater sewage treatment plant. Solids will stay in the tanks.

Wright said that the county is responsible for the tanks and will monitor them. He said solids will be pumped from the tanks when needed.

The estimated cost of the project is $14.3 million and they have gotten almost all of it covered with grants, he said.

The project website said project completion will occur in October 2025.

Devola residents can see the progress of the tank installation on a new tank installation progress map the county put on the project website at www.devolaimprovement.com.



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