Thanks to state fund, Gayville to see water system upgrade

GAYVILLE � By the end of next summer, most of the residents of Gayville should see a difference in their drinking water.

Thanks to a $900,000 low-interest loan from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, Gayville will be able to make improvements to a century-old water distribution system.

�We know the system is getting kind of bad,� said Gayville mayor Jay Jorgensen. �Some of the people aren�t getting the best quality of water.�

Now that the town has the money to replace parts of the system, the next step is figuring out when the pipes will be replaces.

Arens Engineering out of Yankton is working on the plans to replace the system and will send them to Pierre for approval. The company is hoping to start on the project by March and complete it by late summer.

�I would say we are looking at a three-to four-month project,� said Arens Engineering�s Vernon Arens. �It depends on the work schedule and the number of crews we have.�

Jorgensen said the town has been looking into replacing the current system for the last three years.

According to a report put together by Arens Engineering, Gayville�s original water distribution system was installed in 1910. The pipe that makes up the system is four-to six-inch in diameter cast iron, and a majority of it is in fair to poor condition.

The report states the original piping is the principle reason for the lack of water pressure and red water complaints in the central part of the Gayville water distribution system.

In 1968, the town installed a wastewater collection system plus a wastewater treatment lagoon and they are considered in good to fair condition.

The project next summer will replace all of the pipes from 1910 and part of the 1968 system.

�The more critical one is the older one,� Arens said.

The project will also replace a few dead end systems. There are 11 dead-end systems located at the edges of Gayville.

�There are some dead-end lines that they would like to move for fire protection,� Arens said.

The aging pipe isn�t going to be replaced by new pipe, technically. Instead of using cast iron piping, Arens Engineering will be using six-inch diameter PVC piping.

Arens said there are two reasons for the switch.

�PVC doesn�t have the corrosion problems that you have with cast iron, and there is less cost with it, too,� he said. �There is some new cast iron that does have a cement lining, but the PVC is more cost-efficient.�

The cost of replacing the cast iron watermain is estimated to be $687,700, with the dead-end main loop closures costing around $110,000 for a total replacement cost of $797,700. The project design and construction engineering cost will run about $111,300, bringing the total to $909,000.

�According to the projection, the loan will cover it all,� Jorgensen said.

The drinking water project is separate from another water project in Gayville. With all the record rainfall this summer, a small portion of a drainage system in Gayville collapsed near the 500 block of Iverson Street. That portion has been temporarily fixed, but the town is still hoping for a permanent solution next summer.

�We are still working on the loan application,� Jorgensen said. �It�s moving forward, but a little slow.�

Arens said he is hoping to work on the drainage project next summer, too.

�We may end up with the same contractor, but there is no guarantee,� he said. �They will be working on that once the water project is done.�

With both projects set, there should be a lot of construction next summer in Gayville.

�There is a lot of work to be done and a busy year, but the good thing is to have it done in a year rather than two or three years,� Arens said. �It will be a nice project for the community.�

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