Construction on a $6.5 million sewer line project in the southern side of Kyle is estimated to be completed in 2019, bringing more development to the area.
Discussion on the project began six years ago, when city officials decided a main sewer line was needed in south Kyle. The proposed line would run south along I-35 from FM 150 as far south as Yarrington Road.
In the late 1990s, city officials decided to run a main sewer line on the north side of Kyle, which lead to development.
Without a main sewer line, the southern part of Kyle couldn’t develop properly as no developer could afford to install the main sewer line, said James Earp, assistant city manager.
To resolve the issue, the city will install collection lines, a lift station, which is a collection tank with pressure pumps to move sewage through lines, and force mains, which use pressure from the lift station to force sewage towards the sewage treatment plant.
As the completed project will make development more feasible, the city will collect more in sewer fees, Earp said.
While working on the project, city officials considered partnering with San Marcos and sending sewage to San Marcos for the first several years.
It might have offset some of the construction cost, but the plan didn’t work out, Earp said.
Engineers estimated San Marcos would be able to receive 4,300 LUEs (living unit equivalents, or the sewage of one household) per day. However, due to the land’s elevation, the collection line would be too flat for sewage to flow south pulled by gravity to San Marcos.
“The elevation made the pipe so flat they could only get 900 LUEs instead of 4,300 LUEs,” Earp said.
As the city could get a greater capacity of 2,200 LUEs without connecting to San Marcos, officials decided it made financial sense to proceed with their initial plan, Earp said.
City Engineer Leon Barba said he hopes to have the project out for bids by the end of the year, after TxDOT and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality approve required permits.
After a development contract is approved, construction is estimated to begin January or February 2018, Barba said. Construction is estimated to take 10 to 11 months.
“If we can get it done sooner, that’s what we’re going to do,” Barba said.
With the project possibly completed in 2019, the city may see increased development in the southern side of Kyle within a few years.
“It’s been a project a long time coming,” Earp said. “It’s really encouraging to us as staff that the council had enough foresight to start thinking about this problem so long ago.”