Lockwood Sanitary Sewer Named BEC Large Project of the Year
The Billings Engineers Club (BEC) presented the Large Project of the Year Award to the Lockwood Sanitary Sewer, Phase 1 project in Yellowstone County, Montana. Morrison-Maierle provided services to the Lockwood Water and Sewer District (LWSD), including design, bidding, construction phase services, and complete field survey services for design and construction activities.
Until 2009, Lockwood was one of the largest contiguous populations in Montana being served entirely by on-site wastewater systems. Older subdivisions in the community consist of small lots with limited area for drainfield replacement or extensions. Newer subdivisions rely on large lots and expensive on-site treatment systems, or alternative systems due to soil conditions. Federal and state agencies have identified the on-site septic systems in Lockwood as an environmental threat due to nitrate contamination of the local groundwater. These environmental concerns and lack of a central sewer system have restricted the economic development of the area. The Lockwood area began the pursuit of a central sewer system in 1997. In 2008, the Lockwood Water and Sewer District negotiated an agreement with the City of Billings to accept and treat the wastewater from the LWSD. Thereafter, the community passed a general obligation bond to fund the “Phase 1 Sewer Subdistrict.” Construction of the Phase 1 system consisted of five construction projects starting in July, 2009 and finishing in October, 2012. The Phase 1 system services approximately 40% of the LWSD service area.
With the construction of the sewer, positive changes are occurring:
- Environmental threats are being alleviated;
- Property values for properties with sewer service have increased;
- New businesses are building in Lockwood that originally could not function with onsite systems;
- New residential developments can subdivide into smaller lots resulting in a more compact community;
- Regionalization of wastewater treatment is occurring between the City of Billings and the LWSD.
With the successful completion of the Phase 1 project, LWSD is now in planning stages to complete the Phase 2 Subdistrict which will extend the areas with central sewer service.
The BEC Project of the Year awards are in recognition of a firm that exhibits outstanding achievement using innovation in engineering design. The definitions of innovation, for the purposes of this award, include projects of a scale larger than a Montana firm would normally achieve, designs which are the first of their kind from a Montana firm, projects with a difficult or tight time line, projects that involve a substantial coordination effort, projects deploying new or innovative construction techniques or practices, and designs employing new design technology in modeling or computer-assisted design tools.
To read more about the BEC 2013 awards, please go to http://www.billingsengineersclub.org/awards-scholarships/.