By Travis Gulbrandson
It’s been a long time coming, but work has finally commenced on two projects at the Vermillion Sanitary Landfill.
Landfill manager Bob Iverson spoke to members of the Vermillion City Council about efforts to rebuild the baler building and to make a new leachate pond and collection system during a special meeting Monday afternoon.
Iverson said crews started laying the beams in “right after Christmas.”
“They’ll probably start putting up the building within the next two, two and a half weeks,” he said. “They’ll put up the building and get it heated, they’ll do all the plumbing and electric (work), and then they’ll pour all the concrete outside.”
Before the building could start, approximately 20,000 cubic yards of clay were hauled in to build the foundation, which had to be raised up close to eight feet, Iverson said.
The main structure of the building will be held up by 10 piers that measure eight by 12 feet and are 18 inches thick.
“The footings … are 18 inches thick and two feet wide,” Iverson said. “It takes a lot of concrete to hold up this building.”
This building will replace the one that was destroyed in a fire in October 2012 and resulted in the loss of items including the bailer, conveyor and a truck.
In subsequent meetings the city council replaced the lost items in 2012 and 2013.
The cause of the fire was undetermined following inspections from five investigators.
The new building will have “basically the same” layout as the old one, Iverson said, except that it will be “a little bit longer.”
Iverson also discussed progress on the landfill’s leachate pond and collection system that will serve some of the existing cells and future cells.
Dirt had to be hauled in by the contractor to make the elevation of the future leachate system level throughout.
The bid for the project was awarded to RS Halstead Corp by the city council last year.
“They hauled in close to 70,000 cubic yards (of dirt),” Iverson said. “That came out of our trench, which will help us this coming year on digging the trench.”
The leachate system will be located on the east side of the landfill.
“Before, we were in the waste area with our old building, and now we’re out of our waste area, so it won’t have to be moved later on,” Iverson said.
Following the dirt work, a double-sided non-sliding liner was laid down and checked for leaks.
The completed leachate pond will hold 1 million gallons, Iverson said.
“Lake Andes just built one in the last couple of years,” he said. “They get around 30 to 40 tons a day, and we get up to 150 tons a day, and they have a 6 million gallon pond. Theirs has been up there for two years now, and there’s about 18 inches of water in it. So they overbuilt.”
The original completion date of the leachate pond was set at Nov. 15, 2013.
“They had some delays and problems with some of their equipment, so we’re working with them to determine what we’re going to do,” Iverson said. “It’s too cold out there to do some of the work right now, so we’ll be having meetings with them to discuss what’s going to happen.”