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County thinking long-range with infrastructure projects at Tired Creek Lake

Grady County commissioners are planning for the need for sanitary sewer and drinking water at Tired Creek Lake and on Tuesday night engaged with a consulting engineer for water and sewer pipes to be laid across the bottom of the 960-acre lake.
The pipes to be installed would make water and sewer service available on both sides of the lake once services are established in the future.
Consulting Engineer Stacy Watkins of Watkins & Associates submitted an agreement with a cost not to exceed $5,500 to provide engineering services for the preparation, bidding, construction, administration and inspection services for installation of water and wastewater conduits under the lake.
Watkins also presented a projected cost for the project of $830,600 if the project were to be contracted out. Just the cost of materials is estimated at well over $500,000.
The engineer said county forces could dig the trench and bury the pipe, but he recommended a contractor be hired and made responsible for fusing the pipe together and pressure testing it to make sure it was leak proof.
Commissioner Ray Prince asked if Watkins was also proposing conduit for cable TV or other services that may be required in the future.
Watkins said his proposal did not but that it could “easily be done.”
Commission Vice Chairman Charles Norton questioned how deep the pipes would need to be buried because the designers of the dam had expressed concerns about any digging in the lake bottom.
“Does Schnabel (Engineering) have any problem with us doing this?” Norton asked.
Watkins said that typically the pipe would be buried three feet deep, but he would not have an issue if a shallower depth was used in the middle of the lake bottom, but he recommended a minimum of three feet in the shallower waters and near the shoreline.
“We need to ask Schnabel about it. It’s a very good question,” Watkins said.
Norton reminded his fellow commissioners that Schnabel engineers had advised against any digging in the lake bed in order to avoid sand seams which could cause water to escape and the lake not fill.
“We definitely need to run it by them” Watkins said.
Vice Chairman Norton questioned the lower fee for the project and Watkins said he did not anticipate having to spend “a tremendous amount of my personal time” on this project.
Commissioners unanimously approved the contract with Watkins.
In related news, Watkins reported Tuesday night that the Georgia Environmental Protection Division had signed off on his plans for an access road to the lake from Gainous Road on property the county purchased from Monrovia Growers last year for an easement.
According to Watkins, county road department crews will have the authority to begin clearing and grubbing the area by the middle of this month.

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