The city of Bonne Terre is moving forward this year with many plans to help better and grow the city.
Bonne Terre City Administrator Jim Eaton said they have quite a few projects planned for this year that will keep them extremely busy.
“We are looking at replacing the water line on Dover Street and one on Short Street to include the service lines,” Eaton said. “We are in the process of getting that engineered and we don’t really know definitely what we are getting into, therefore, we don’t know if we will be able to get both projects done this year.”
Eaton said they are also addressing the wastewater issues and they have hired someone licensed for operation. He added they will be focusing on further upgrading the UV treatment system this spring.
“You run your (wastewater past) electric lights and it does what the sunlight would do,” said Eaton. “You have to run this equipment starting in March or April and keep running it through all of the spring and summer. We don’t have to run it in the winter.”
Eaton said they have the new equipment ordered and it will be installed in March.
“Another thing we are doing is setting up a complete maintenance program on the generators at the lift stations and the correctional facility treatment plant,” Eaton said. “We will set up a total maintenance system on all these units.”
He added they will also probably overlay two or three streets this year. Some areas may have to be dug out and have other things done to them, but it’s primarily a resurfacing plan.
“At this point I am not sure which streets they will choose yet,” Eaton said. “Dover Street obviously needs to be resurfaced, but it probably won’t happen this year because it is going to be a mess and we will have to run service lines to all the homes.”
Eaton explained that once they run the new lines, they will have to put granules in and around the lines and make sure it’s packed down before they can lay any asphalt. He stressed it would be best to wait until the following year for the asphalt.
“We are renovating our swimming pool and its plumbing,” said Eaton. “The last couple of years we have gotten the proper equipment in as far as the chemicals, but then we found out about all the other needs.”
Eaton said they will be sandblasting the pool and repairing some of the walls.
“When (the overflow trough around the top edge of the pool) was originally put on the water came out behind the plaster causing it to crumble,” said Eaton. “So all of that has to be corrected as well. Part of the process will be to take the plaster down to where it fits correctly and where it should have been in the first place. We are also replacing the diving board and life guard stands.”
Eaton said they will replace the metal piping for the pool, which allows them to control the flow of water and treatment chemicals. He said the jets will also be replaced. They will also recalibrate the chemicals.
“We have new playground equipment that will be installed up at Bonne Terre Lakeview Park this spring,” said Eaton. “The parks board also wants to try to get sprinkler systems installed on all the baseball fields.”
Eaton said the city workers should complete the installation of new signs around town. He explained they ordered new street signs and other signs last year, but they haven’t been able to install all of them.
“The project down by Cheap Smokes and Dairy Queen, we got an approval for that and we are just waiting on an engineer to draw up the plans,” Eaton said. “It probably won’t start until this summer, but we are going to be widening Berry Road and installing street drainage to get it into the system.”
Eaton explained the way it is set up now the lift station floods because the runoff water pours in. He added this may not completely fix the problem, but they are trying to address the issue. It should at least reduce the flooding in nearby buildings.
“The EPA is meeting with us the first of the month along with several of their departments to look for alternative funding for some of our current problems,” said Eaton. “EPA Remediation Project Manager Jason Gunter has told me they have a contractor they feel is well suited for getting the sludge out of the collection basin. That should be happening right away.”
Eaton added that the baseball fields are too “hot”, which means the lead levels are too high. He said they are trying to get the EPA to commit to the three baseball fields at the Bonne Terre Sports Complex and the one at Veterans Park.
“We hope to put the road in the industrial park and we are trying to get the last tract of land where the railroad bed is located,” Eaton said. “Technically, St. Joe had deeded it to the Bonne Terre Development Corporation years ago. If you look at a map of what was deeded to the community development, the railroad bed, both sides of it, were (included) in what was deeded.
“Whether we get that or not, we will be putting that road in, but it would be a lot better if we could work something out with them.”
Eaton stressed the city has a limited amount of money but they are going to use it wisely.