The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

December 7, 2012

Portage preparing for sewer upgrades

PORTAGE — With a major water project nearly completed, Portage area officials are ready to embark on improvements to the sanitary sewer system.

Preliminary design is under way for expansion of the multi-municipal system to the Martindale area of Portage Township and replacement of collection lines through a section of Portage Borough.

An extension to Martindale, southeast of the borough along Route 164, will eliminate a significant problem with dozens of malfunctioning on-lot and wildcat systems.

“It’s going to correct some deplorable conditions,” township Supervisor Richard Olshavsky said of the work, which is planned to extend to 150 homes in Martindale.

On the borough’s end, plans are in the works to replace a portion of the main transmission line in an area closest to the sewer plant near the Little Conemaugh River, borough manager Bob Koban said.

“The area is in the 3rd Ward, the bottom end, down by the football stadium,” Koban said.

Cost of the expansion and line upgrade is estimated at $6 million. The authority is to seek grants or loans through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure and Investment Authority or the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utility Service.

“It’s serving a low-income area and it’s the type of project that RUS likes to fund,” Olshavsky said.

Municipal sewer service is badly needed in the Martindale area because of its proximity to wells belonging to the Portage Water Authority, Supervisor Elwood Selapack said.

“There is probably only two places up there that have sand mounds. The rest are on-lot or wildcat,” Selapack said. “The water authority has a well up there. They want to protect that.”

Koban said the work in the borough will help reduce the amount of storm water entering sewage lines and reaching the wastewater treatment plant.

“There is a ton of infiltration in that neck of the woods,” Koban said. “That area also is a bottleneck. Everything goes in that direction.”

Portage Township supervisors have agreed to lead the way by providing up-front money needed to get preliminary design work started by Steve Sewalk, an engineer with The EADS Group, an engineering, architecture and design services firm.

The township’s 2013 budget includes $75,000 needed to get the design work started. That money will be paid back to the township when project funding is in place, Selapack said.

The extension through the township will begin at Rd’s Fiddlers Green Tavern on Route 164 and continue about three miles south on that route to the Martindale area.

The water line will follow survey work for the nearly finished $5 million upgrade and expansion of the water distribution system and tank project in the township, Olshavsky said.

The same easements used for the water line likely will serve for the sewer extension, he said.

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat print edition.

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat e-edition.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Flower2 Flowers' color doesn't have to fade

    Those pots of bright yellow daffodils, Easter lilies and hyacinths gracing the home this weekend do not have to end up in the trash bin when the blooms start to fade.

    April 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • Refinancing could lower Richland School District's debt by $2.2M

    When Richland School District borrowed funds for its high school project a decade ago, board members circled “2014” on their calendars as a likely first option to refinance the debt.

    April 20, 2014

  • Pipeline to carry shale byproducts

    An 8-inch transmission line crossing Pennsylvania, including four municipalities in Cambria County, is being repurposed to carry some of the by-products from Marcellus and Utica shale production.

    April 20, 2014

  • Judge Creany, Timothy Vets courts gain support

    Signs of success are mostly anecdotal in Pennsylvania’s special courts for veterans, but judicial officials and lawmakers are so convinced of the program, they’re lobbying to expand it.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • pow21 Person of the Week: ‘I wanted to help’: Teen uses birthday to show love for children, animals

    Anastasia Machik’s love for children and animals inspired her to forgo her birthday gifts for the sake of the two.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Students taking steps to call attention to child abuse

    An upcoming community walk will help raise awareness of child abuse.

    April 20, 2014

  • In brief: PennDOT reports weekly work schedule

    April 20, 2014

  • District Deaths April 21, 2014

    April 20, 2014

  • Halfway house inmates can ease back into society

    Prison life can be a time warp.
    When inmates are locked away – for months, years, decades – society moves forward: Technology evolves, major events occur, pop culture changes. From a personal perspective, families and friends live their lives: weddings, funerals, graduations, births, retirements. All the while, criminals bide their time, existing in a regimented world of cement walls and metal bars.
    Almost all of them eventually rejoin society, though.

    April 19, 2014

  • Crime board took aim at house

    Johnstown’s unemployment rate is around 8 percent.
    One-third of the city’s population lives in poverty.
    Burglaries and assaults significantly increased between 2010 and 2012. There is a thriving illegal trade in heroin and prescription drugs.
    Given those conditions, it can be challenging for Johnstown Community Corrections Center residents to find jobs when living in the facility or to avoid falling back into a criminal lifestyle upon their release.

    April 19, 2014

Poll

Would you like to see the Johnstown Community Corrections Center remain open after its lease runs out on Oct. 11, 2015?

Yes
No
I'm not sure
     View Results
House Ads