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Akron, Ohio

MAYOR HORRIGAN ANNOUNCES FIRST AMENDMENT TO CONSENT DECREE FOR AKRON WATERWAYS RENEWED PROJECT

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City of Akron Press Release
Published: 09-21-2016

Akron, Ohio, Sept. 21, 2016 – Mayor Dan Horrigan announced today that Judge John Adams of the United States District Court had entered the First Amendment to the City’s Consent Decree on September 20, 2016. Judge Adams’ approval of the Amendment marked a culmination of months of negotiation and collaboration between the City of Akron, the United States, and the State of Ohio, all of whom had agreed to the terms of the Amendment.

The Amendment, which includes two modifications to the Akron Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Consent Decree, provides for earlier environmental benefit, reduced and/or eliminated community and environmental impacts, and reduced costs.

“When I came into office, I made it my priority to responsibly collaborate with the EPA to meaningfully reduce the costs of the CSO Project to the Akron rate payers while maintaining our commitment to safeguarding our environment.  Today, I am proud to say that true progress has been made on both fronts,” said Mayor Horrigan.

“Through the efforts of many at the local, state, and federal levels, we have realized a savings of $56.7 million dollars to the City of Akron in 2016.  Further, the approval of this Amendment will allow the City to realize greater environmental benefit at a lower cost by substituting ‘gray’ solutions for innovative ‘green’ alternatives.

I extend my gratitude to the team of local, state and federal officials who worked to negotiate this Amendment, and commend Judge Adams for his diligence.  As this Project moves forward, we will continue to work collaboratively and think creatively to find smarter, more efficient financing and engineering alternatives that will reduce costs and add value for our citizens.”    

The first modification is the placement of a steel reinforced pneumatically placed mortar cap on the Main Outfall Interceptor. The new design, while meeting the performance requirements of the originally planned project, significantly reduces, and in some instances, eliminates the following impacts:

  • Eliminates the need for major, long term disruption of the Towpath trail
  • Eliminates the need for acquisition of additional right of way
  • Prevents the destruction of mature trees along the Towpath and the Cuyahoga River
  • Eliminates the need for new retaining walls along the river
  • Reduces major utility coordination and relocation
  • Minimizes the impacts to the Cuyahoga River, existing wetlands, Summit Metro Parks and the Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

This new design saves the City an estimated $30 million dollars by eliminating the relief interceptor sewer parallel to the Main Outfall Interceptor Sewer, and associated pump station.

The second modification changes the sequence of two projects at the Akron Water Reclamation Facility (WRF), permitting the City to increase the biological secondary treatment capacity to 220 million gallons per day (previously 130 million gallons per day) ahead of the original schedule. The new design is fully supported by the Step Feed Phase 1 pilot project that was previously constructed and analyzed in order to optimize the current design.

Both modifications align with the mission of Akron Waterways Renewed (AWR) Program - to invest in Akron’s environmental future by building infrastructure for the next century that will protect public health and maintain water of the highest quality in the most cost-effective manner while providing local jobs for the citizens of Akron.

For detailed information on the Akron Waterways Renewed project, please visit: www.akronwaterwaysrenewed.com/documents.

 

For further information, contact:
Christine R. Curry
Director of Communications
166 South High Street, Akron, OH 44308
www.akronohio.gov
Phone: 330/375-2209
E-mail: Ccurry@akronohio.gov

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