The Town approved funding for the design of a water treatment facility to remove manganese from the source water.  The Town has hired Woodard & Curran as the Owner's Project Manager and Wright-Pierce as the designer.  Design work is nearly complete and we expect to go out to bid for the construction of the plant soon but not in time for the May 2017 Town Meeting.

June 2017: The bid review was completed and preparations for the June 20th Special Town Meeting are underway.  The funding request for the treatment plant project will be $10.4 million based on the bid results.  Information about the request can be found in this article.  The request was approved and construction is expected to begin in August.

May 2017: Filed sub bids were opened on May 10th.  Bids are being reviewed by Wright-Pierce and were higher than expected.  The funding request for the plant was raised from $9 million to $10 million based on a review of the filed sub-bid results.  These results typically are one-third of the project cost and were significantly higher than the estimate so the total project cost was adjusted to reflect the latest cost information.  A final adjustment will be made once the bids for the project are opened on May 31st.

Final bids were opened on May 31st and were higher than anticipated.  The bids are being reviewed by Wright-Pierce and preliminary results indicate construction will cost $10.6 million.

April 2017: The Board of Selectmen accepted the water main easement and it was recorded at the Registry of Deeds.  The Conservation Commission approved the Notice of Intent for the water treatment plant and transmission mains.  MassDEP's plan review comments were addressed.  Contract #1 for the construction of the plant goes out to bid on April 19th.  Bids are due May 31st.  Contract #2 for the construction of the transmission mains will go out to bid in May and will be due on May 31st.  

The Board of Selectmen agreed to schedule a Special Town Meeting for June 20th for the Town to consider funding the construction of the water treatment facility.  The warrant will contain 2 articles.  The first is for the construction of the water treatment plant, transmission mains and associated costs which are estimated at $9 million.  The second article is for fire sprinkler system upgrades at the Public Works Facility estimated at $100,000.  These estimates are based on the latest engineer's probable cost of construction and are subject to change depending on bid results.

March 2017: The easment has yet to be registered but the property owner was able to sign the Notice of Intent to be filed with the Conservation Commission allowing for the review of the transmission mains, treatment plant and stormwater report.  The hearing was held in late March and continued until April 12th.  MassDEP provided some comments about the plant design and is working with the designer to address their concerns.  The possibility of a June Special Town Meeting was discussed with the Board of Selectmen.

February 2017: The plant has reached 95% design.  Active review processes include Topsfield's Zoning Board of Appeals, MassDEP and MEPA.  The filing of the Notice of Intent with Topsfield's Conservation Commission is being delayed due to a probate issue with a transmission main easement.  As a result a bid price will not be available for the May Town Meeting.  The Water Commissioners do not want to request construction funding without a bid price in hand so the request will not be discussed at Town Meeting in May 2017.  A Special Town Meeting will be needed or the project will be delayed one year.  The Zoning Board of Appeals approved the project.

January 2017: The review of the 60% design plans was completed and the Board of Water Commissioners met with the project designer and owner's project manager to discuss the status of the project including cost and schedule.  The Board emphasized the need to obtain bids prior to Town Meeting in May 2017.  The cost of the project has increased due to inflation and design changes needed to improve the reliability and efficiency of the plant.  More information about this will be posted in the next several weeks.  The Zoning Board of Appeals hearing was continued until their February meeting.

The 95% design milestone was reached and plans were submitted to MassDEP for approval.

December 2016: Reviewing 60% design plans and contracts.  Plans were submitted to the Zoning Board of Appeals for their review.  The hearing was continued until January.

September 2016: Soil borings were conducted along transmission main routes. Review of the Basis of Design report continues.

August 2016: We've received and are reviewing the Basis of Design report prepared by Wright-Pierce.  This report describes the design parameters for the plant, required equipment, etc.

July 2016: Actual design work begins with the development of the Basis of Design Report.  Surveying along the water main routes continues and layout of easements begins.

June 2016: MassDEP approved the pilot test report.

March 2015: We've reviewed the pilot test report and it was submitted to MassDEP for approval.  Testing results were very favorable.  All finished water manganese lab tests were below detection limits.  An aeration process and permanganate system was added to the project as a result of the pilot testing.

December 2015: Pilot testing was completed and the results look very favorable.  We expect the report by mid-January.  Work has started in obtaining one or more easements needed for the installation of the raw water transmission main.  The easements are needed to reduce or eliminate the amount of pipe installed on Route 1.

November 2015: The pilot test proposal was submitted to MassDEP and they have 60 days to review it.  Hydraulic modelling work begins to determine if  any distribution system modifications are needed due to relocating the fresh water feeds from the pump stations to the Public Works Building.

Hydraulic modelling is complete and the relocation of the fresh water feeds from the pumpstations to the Public Works Building will require the installation of an altitude valve on the nearby storage tank to prevent uneven tank filling.  Due to the high elevation of the proposed plant, it will need an internal booster pump to provide pressurized water for process and domestic purposes.  The Public Works Building has a similar pump system.

Pilot testing started on 11/30 and is expected to last a couple of weeks.  Blueleaf is conducting the testing.

October 2015: We received comments from DEP concerning the pilot testing proposal and are working on finalizing the plan.  Pilot testing is scheduled for later this month.  Work on transmission main routing and design continues.

September 2015: Pilot testing proposal was sent to DEP for review.  Hydraulic modeling was completed to examine potential changes needed in the distribution system required by changing the location of water addition.  The Boston Street tank will need an altitude valve to prevent uneven tank filling due to the plant's close proximity to the tank

August 2015: Contract with Wright-Pierce was finalized and work began on drafting the pilot test proposal for MassDEP.

June 2015: Wright-Pierce ranked as the most qualifeid firm and the Town is negotiationg a contract for the design of the plant.

May 2015: Four engineering firms submitted qualifications for the water treatment plant design contract.  We are reviewing the qualifications and will be selecting a firm to design the plant.

April 2015: The Request for Qualifications for design services was published.  Qualifications are due by May 6, 2015.

January 2015: Woodard & Curran is developing the Request for Qualifications for the design work and reviewing/updating the feasibility study.

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Topsfield, MA 01983


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Topsfield, MA 01983


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