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Afton set to go for wastewater treatment project

Afton’s wastewater treatment project is a go.

After a tight time crunch to get approval before July 1, the Afton City Council approved a contractor’s bid and received state certification for the city’s wastewater treatment overhaul. The city could have lost out on about $2 million in state grants if approved after July 1, which coincides with the end of the fiscal year. 

On Thursday, the city council approved a $1,826,724 contract to Ellingson Drainage for the project's construction.

The the 25-acre wastewater treatment project will replace private septic systems north of the city’s downtown and is expected to cost about $4 million.

There may be short interruptions while systems change over to the new setup, but “for the vast majority, there shouldn't be any impact on them,” said City Administrator Ron Moorse.

The project will affect more than 75 homes and 25 businesses that are currently using private septic systems. Many of the systems no longer meet state requirements and have caused problems in the past when the St. Croix River floods.

Moorse said construction crews will break ground in September, and construction should be completed by July 2017.

In the meantime, he said, the MPCA will continue to assess if any historical areas will be affected by the construction.