By Sarah Richardson
Following a major funding announcement in early September, the groundbreaking for the new municipal water plant was held on Monday, Oct. 3, at the site in Caldwell. Gov. Jim Justice, Mayor Beverly White, City Manager Misty Hill, Public Works Director Tony Legg, Engineer and VP of Chapman Technical Group Greg Belcher, and members of Lewisburg City Council threw ceremonial first shovels of dirt to celebrate the start of the massive project.
The City of Lewisburg is the Regional Water Supplier in Greenbrier County and serves approximately 12,000 customers in Lewisburg, Ronceverte, Renick, Frankford, Maxwelton, Fairlea, and Caldwell.
The project includes upgrading the water treatment plant’s capacity from 1,200 gpm to 4,000 gpm, more than tripling its current output; relocating the source of water supply upstream of the landfill and salvage yard which requires nearly two miles of 24” water line and a new raw water intake facility; construction of 3 million gallons of additional storage tanks in the system; and the replacement of undersized water mains in the system along with redundant supply lines to further minimize future outages.
The project will not only increase the quality and quantity of potable water to the city’s customers but will also increase the overall resiliency of the system by providing a safe and dependable supply of water to the system. It will also allow new customers to be added to the water system.
“The very thing that gives us life is water,” Gov. Justice said. “Without any question, water is essential in every way and in every aspect of our lives.”
“We closed City Hall so that our employees could be here for this occasion,” said Mayor White. “They truly do work so hard.”
“This was the team,” White continued. “Water is life. They were willing to get on board and be a part of the solution. Let’s give them all a big hand for all the easements they were able to get. This is truly a day of answered prayers.”
After the ceremony, Sen. Baldwin took a moment to appreciate the scope of the project, saying, “There are more than 12,000 people who rely on this facility every day for their water. The Public Works Department, everyone at the city – it’s a huge undertaking. We all owe them our sincere gratitude.”
“I have to agree with Mayor White,” Sen. Baldwin concluded. “Today is a day of answered prayers.”