November and December have been busy months for the community wastewater project. Project information is always available at www.westfordsfuture.com. Here are some updates on specific aspects of the project:
Funding Commitments: The Town is still waiting to receive word from the State of Vermont on American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to be allocated to the Westford Community Wastewater Project. Things are looking very positive, but the pandemic and other factors have delayed hearing about a finalized award. As soon as we learn more, we will update residents on the results.
Engineering Progress: You may have seen the engineering team from Green Mountain Engineering (Alan Huizenga, Brad Washburn, and Alex Huizenga) visiting property owners in and around the Town Common. They have verified building plumbing and exits, which is essential information for final design engineering for those properties who would choose– voluntarily – to connect to a community system. Based on responses to the service area property owner survey and meetings with the engineering team, 19 of the 34 eligible parcels in the service area plan to connect to the system, and another 7 are considering whether to connect.
Maple Shade Town Forest Leach Field Evaluation: You also may have seen a drill rig on the Jackson Farm property during the week of November 7th. As a normal and required part of the engineering design process, a drill rig took soil borings and conducted large-scale hydraulic tests of the proposed leach field (wastewater disposal) area on the Maple Shade Town Forest property. This involves taking soil borings to establish the depth to clay layers and bedrock underneath the disposal field, pumping water into the ground, and taking readings at a monitoring well to assess how much wastewater can be applied safely. The testing found that the leach field area has very deep, well-drained soils, with 34’ depth to bedrock and no groundwater. This is excellent news for the, effectiveness, and safety of the site’s use as a wastewater disposal site. It means that the area can safely manage projected system effluent in a way that is protective of groundwater, and protective of nearby properties and wells and will have superior resiliency and longevity. It further establishes that securing the property of the Maple Shade Forest in which this site is located provides for many long-term benefits to the Town and its residents. Additional engineering evaluation and design will now be prepared and reviewed with State regulators to determine a final capacity number and site layout.
A public informational meeting on the community wastewater system is scheduled for Tuesday, February 8th, from 6:30-8:30pm at Westford School. Hybrid attendance options will be available. Full information about this event can be found at https://www.westfordsfuture.com/events.html.