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A toilet paper "ribbon cutting"

NL wastewater treatment plant celebrates expansion
North Liberty City Councilman and Mayor Pro Tempore Chris Hoffman delivers remarks ahead of a toilet paper “ribbon cutting” Thursday, Oct. 18, at the North Liberty Waste Water Treatment Plant. (photo by Chris Umscheid)

Photo: North Liberty City Councilman and Mayor Pro Tempore Chris Hoffman delivers remarks ahead of a toilet paper “ribbon cutting” Thursday, Oct. 18, at the North Liberty Waste Water Treatment Plant. Plant staff celebrated the completion of a three-year expansion project with an open house including public tours, as well as the aforementioned cutting ceremony, which included (from left) Community Engagement Coordinator Jillian Miller, Tony Tonarelli (Waste Water staff), Mark Farrier (Waste Water staff), Project Engineer Jennifer Ruddy (FOX Engineering), David Furler (Waste Water staff), Wastewater Superintendent Drew Lammers, Hoffman, Cris Jaster (Waste Water staff), Tom Arey (Waste Water staff) and Communications Director Nick Bergus.
Hoffman recognized FOX Engineering and Shive-Hattery for their efforts in facilitating the expansion. “They’re the real reason this was able to happen,” Hoffman said. “There’s been a lot going on down here the last three years.” He noted the city had a waste treatment plant since 1967, and for many years it was big enough to handle what the residents produced. “It took 31 years to realize they needed to upgrade, so they did in 1998 (at the start of the population boom).” North Liberty’s population has been outpacing the plant’s capabilities, he added, necessitating further expansion. In the process, the City adopted the latest technology, creating an award-winning facility.
“We went from being on the DNR’s ‘poop’ list, back in the early 2000’s, to being something that’s unique to the State of Iowa, and still unique to the United States, I think. This is a pretty special facility.” The expanded facility will handle a population of nearly 30,000, Hoffman said.