The City of Toledo has announced they expect to begin construction on their new water tower sometime in the middle of next year, likely when construction on their new wastewater treatment plant is drawing to a close.
Funding for the water tower upgrade has been made available through a $725,000 grant from the State Department of Commerce, which the city learned they had been awarded on Sept. 11, and the funding is expected to cover the entire cost of building a new water tower while also refurbishing the existing water tower.
"I truly think the reason that we did receive the grant...is because we did our homework," said City Clerk Michelle Whitten, noting the amount of work by city employees that went into inspecting and evaluating the water system to determine a new tower would be warranted. "I really think we showed the work rather than saying, 'We think we need this.'"
It was noted the city had received a similar grant of $1 million from the state last year toward construction of their new sewer plant, which is expected to be completed next spring and online later in the year. Of the $9.6 million in estimated costs to complete the plant, $6.4 million has been provided through state and county grants, while the remainder is available through a Public Works Trust Fund Loan.
City Hall has also reported the cost to build the plant has come in lower than expected at this point in the project and funding remains for extra concrete and other materials to be used in possibly lining the decommissioned lagoons of the old plant to be used for other purposes. Council Member James Fluckinger has said he is actively pursuing steps to establish a disk gold course at the site as a means to draw recreationalists into town, an idea which has received support from other officials. Whitten has said the city remains open to ideas and would like to have something planned out to make use of the available materials and labor currently used during plant construction.