Smyrna clears land for new water tower

SMYRNA — The Town of Smyrna is clearing room for its fourth water tower to accommodate the growing need for water storage and pressure, town manager Gary Stulir said.

The more than 1-acre plot being cleared is located across DuPont Parkway from the Smyrna Rest Stop, north of downtown.

Smyrna already has water towers east (Monrovia Avenue), west (West Glenwood Avenue) and south (Jimmy Drive) of town.

According to Mr. Stulir, the public works project fits in with the town’s projected growth.

“We acquired the land from the state a few years ago with the idea that it would be used for a public works type project — potentially a water tower,” he said. “Once our engineers evaluated our needs, we determined that we did actually need a water tower on the north side of town.”

Using mostly U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) loans to finance the project, Mr. Stulir suspects the price tag of the project will clock in somewhere around $2 million.

“We’re not certain yet, but going by historic costs, that’s where we’d expect it to be,” he said. “Last time we built a water tower — around 2004 — it cost us roughly $1.8 million for a 750,000-gallon water tower. That was the one on Glenwood Avenue.”

The once-wooded lot is currently being cleared and prepped for construction, but the next step will be extensive survey and engineering work, added Mr. Stulir.

“We’ll need to do all the surveying, inspections and design work to determine exactly what size water tower we’ll need, then we can go out for bids on the project,” he said. “We’re hoping to have that done by this fall or early next spring with the hope that we’d break ground by summer 2020.

It’ll take about 12 to 18 months after that to actually put the water tower up. So, this whole process will take about 2 to 2-and-a-half years.”

Mr. Stulir says the project was initiated to stay ahead of the north side of Smyrna’s anticipated growth.

“There are new homes and businesses being constructed throughout town, and the growth specifically in the north portion necessitates this,” he said.

“The new business park being built will drive a lot of demand on its own.”

The planned Duck Creek Business Campus to be built by KRM Development will sit on 206 acres between Routes 13 and 1. It’s anticipated that the sprawling industrial center will have entrances on U.S. 13 just north of Duck Creek and on Paddock Road just east of U.S. 13. The developer claims the campus will have the potential to house over 4,000 jobs in the research, office, manufacturing and warehousing industries and create enough economic impact to add hundreds of jobs on local, county and state levels.

Site work started on the project last summer and it’s likely to move into its next phase shortly, noted Rick Ferrell, a business and economic development consultant for Smyrna.

“Permits will be pulled for this work this summer now that the roadway and entrance to the site is complete,” he said.

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