PIQUA — The city will be seeing a new water tower by summer 2017 as the Piqua City Commission approved the construction of the new water tower and subsequent water main extension during their meeting Tuesday evening.
The commission first approved an emergency resolution to award a contract to Chicago Bridge and Iron Company (CB&I) for the New Central Water Tower Project.
The New Central Water Tower Project includes a new one million-gallon water tower and a new water main extension to connect the tower to the current water distribution system, which will be on Fox Drive, with the new 12-inch water main being installed along 350 feet of Drake Road.
Two small water towers on Spring Street and South Main Street will also be demolished. They are each approximately 22 feet too low to provide adequate water pressure.
Superintendent Don Freisthler of the Piqua Water Treatment Plant explained that the new water tower will allow the city to have proper water pressure for that part of the city. The new water tower will also allow the city to have an additional 75 percent removal of disinfectant biproducts in the city’s water at that tower.
CB&I will construct the new composite tower with a concrete base and steel bowl at a cost not to exceed $3.3 million, which includes a 13 percent contingency.
The new water tower will be funded through a loan from Water Supply Revolving Loan Account (WSRLA) and an Ohio Public Works Commission (OPWC) grant.
The commission also awarded a contract to GM Pipeline Inc. to install the water main extension for the new water tower. The cost is not to exceed $726,000, which includes a 13 percent contingency. It will be funded the same way as the new water tower.
In connection with those resolutions, the commission will then award the construction administration contract for that project to Strand Associates Inc. The cost is not to exceed approximately $178,000, which includes a 15 percent contingency.
The commission also awarded the construction administration contract for the installation of the new water main to Strand Associates Inc. The cost is not to exceed $82,000, which includes a 10 percent contingency.
Freisthler said that Strand Associates completed the design work for both the water tower and water main, explaining it was a natural progression for them to oversee the project.
“Their company and staff is most able to assist us to completion on this project,” Freisthler said.
The commission had already approved preliminary consent legislation for all of the resolutions in regard to the new water tower in August.
Also approved during the commission’s meeting was a lease agreement to permit the usage of Fountain Park, including use of Hance Pavilion and dining hall, to Mainstreet Piqua and the Piqua Arts Council for the final Rock Piqua! concert. The August concert was cancelled due to poor weather conditions and is rescheduled for Oct. 22 at Fountain Park.
“I was really happy with all the music you had this year,” commissioner Joe Wilson said.
Executive Director Jordan Knepper of the Piqua Arts Council said the bands for this concert include the 1988’s and Brother Believe Me. The style of music will be from the 1980’s to the present. Executive Director Lorna Swisher of Mainstreet Piqua said that the music will take place from 6-10 p.m. They will also be having a tailgate party for the Ohio State and Penn State football game. They will also be selling beer and wine.
The commission also approved an ordinance amending the city code in reference to taxicabs. The ordinance updates the language in the city code to reflect changes in the state law that address companies like Uber and Lyft.
City Attorney Stacy Wall said the state is regulating brands like Uber separately from other taxicab companies, which the city regulates, and that this ordinance was not inspired by any incident in the city.
Later in the meeting, the commission approved increasing the city’s purchase order with the city of Dayton for the purchase of quicklime for the Water Treatment Plant. The cost will be increased by $17,000 to a total of $67,000.
The commission also authorized a contract with the Miami County Public Defender Commission at a cost of $20,341.13.
During public comment, Nick Alexander of Piqua spoke on an issue regarding his electric bill with the city. Alexander said that he received a shut-off notice where the disconnect date had been moved forward from what had been previously stated on his bill. According to Alexander, the shut-off notice said his last day to pay before the power would be disconnected was Oct. 3, but his bill said it was Oct. 15.
Alexander also said the disconnect date was within less than 30 days of when he received his bill and that he received no leeway from the city, claiming that he would be shut off on Oct. 4 if he did not pay by Oct. 3.
“The city utility department does not care,” Alexander said.
Also during public comment, Ruth Koon of Piqua questioned the city’s approval of a consultant to redesign Lock 9 Park as well as the possibility of that redesign including an amphitheater. Last month, the commission approved a contract with Gamble Associates Architecture and Urban Planning to complete the initial phase of the design development process for the redevelopment of that area on the riverfront. The cost is not to exceed $124,500.
Koon also questioned the entire reconstruction of Lock 9 Park, which would cost a total of approximately $4 million.
“Imagine how far $4 million would go for improving our 20-plus parks,” Koon said, who is also president of the Friends of the Piqua Parks. Koon also suggested purchasing a portable stage like the city of Troy instead of building an amphitheater as well as investing in the city’s entrances and signage.
Koon ended by saying that she was not there to criticize but to ask the commission to re-evaluate their priorities for the city.
Reach Sam Wildow at (937) 451-3336