News Flash

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Posted on: August 2, 2022

What's That Smell?

homes surrounding lake

What’s that smell?

The odor that occasionally drifts into the developments along N. James and Beaverbrooke Boulevard is related to operations at the Grimes Waste Water Treatment Plant (GWWTP). The GWWTP is located north of the Heritage Elementary, and west of Park Avenue. GWWTP has been operating in this location since the mid 1970’s and is aging, but is still in compliance with the Iowa DNR requirements.

Why does it smell only on certain days or certain times of the day?

The GWWTP is more likely to produce odor during times where there are increased rain events, and when the wind is out of the northwest. Additionally, as the GWWPT is aging, and development is continuing to occur within the City of Grimes, the GWWTP is nearing its designed capacity. This puts increased strain on the systems in place, thus decreasing their efficiency.

What is the City doing about it?

In 2018, the City Council made the decision to join the Des Moines Waste Water Reclamation Authority (WRA). The WRA operates a state-of-the-art treatment facility in the southeast side of Des Moines and is responsible for treating the majority of waste water in the Des Moines Metro. Connecting to the WRA, and subsequent decommissioning of the GWWTP, will require the construction of nearly 7-miles of sanitary sewer main, ranging in size from 30” to 54” in diameter. Once connected, the GWWTP will no longer be needed to treat wastewater, and the majority of the improvements will be removed.

When will this happen?

Since determining to join the WRA in 2018, the City has been hard at work evaluating different points of connection, and re-evaluating if expanding the plant or building a new plant was a more economical solution. It was determined in January of 2020 that joining the WRA and connecting through the western portion of Grimes was the longest term, and economically beneficial solution.

The City has finalized the alignment, and acquired the necessary easements to construct the sanitary sewer main. The City received and accepted bids for the four phases of the project and construction has started on two of the four phases. Construction of the project is anticipated to take approximately 18 months, with an estimated completion date of December 2023.

The GWWTP is more likely to produce odor during times where there are increased rain events, and when the wind is out of the northwest. Additionally, as the GWWPT is aging, and development is continuing to occur within the City of Grimes, the GWWTP is nearing its designed capacity. This puts increased strain on the systems in place, thus decreasing their efficiency.

What is the City doing about it?

In 2018, the City Council made the decision to join the Des Moines Waste Water Reclamation Authority (WRA). The WRA operates a state-of-the-art treatment facility in the southeast side of Des Moines and is responsible for treating the majority of waste water in the Des Moines Metro. Connecting to the WRA, and subsequent decommissioning of the GWWTP, will require the construction of nearly 7-miles of sanitary sewer main, ranging in size from 30” to 54” in diameter. Once connected, the GWWTP will no longer be needed to treat wastewater, and the majority of the improvements will be removed.

When will this happen?

Since determining to join the WRA in 2018, the City has been hard at work evaluating different points of connection, and re-evaluating if expanding the plant or building a new plant was a more economical solution. It was determined in January of 2020 that joining the WRA and connecting through the western portion of Grimes was the longest term, and economically beneficial solution. 

The City has finalized the alignment, and acquired the necessary easements to construct the sanitary sewer main. The City received and accepted bids for the four phases of the project and construction has started on two of the four phases. Construction of the project is anticipated to take approximately 18 months, with an estimated completion date of December 2023.

 

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