Nearly two years after a proposed water tower in Wantagh created massive opposition, a new solution has been formulated for the area.
Town of Hempstead officials and New York American Water President Bill Varley broke ground late Thursday morning on a new well pumping station at the intersection of Demott Avenue and Interlake Drive in Wantagh. The project, which will consist of two one-story structures, is much smaller than a 150-foot water tower that Aqua America pushed for in the summer of 2011 before scraping the plan. Varley said the new system to be built at New York American Water’s Demott Avenue property would increase water pressure for residents in the Wantagh-Seaford area.
“The system will not only incorporate state-of-the-art technology, but it will increase the system’s efficiency in meeting demand during critical peak usage periods,” said Varley, whose company New York American Water acquired Aqua America last year.
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Varley said he hopes the project will be completed by this fall. He obtained necessary permits from the Town of Hempstead and is expecting final approvals soon from the Department of Environmental Conservation. Landscaping improvements are also planned for the property, which is located in the vicinity of the Seaford-Oyster Bay Expressway.
Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray said after American Water’s acquisition of Aqua was completed, she along with Hempstead Town Board members, Angie Cullin, R-Freeport and Gary Hudes, R-Levittown approached Varley about developing a “less intrusive solution” to address water pressure in Wantagh and Seaford that would not involve a large tower.
“These two-one story buildings are going to be so much better,” said Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray after Thursday’s groundbreaking. “To have this re-engineered solution that will solve the technical problems but address the aesthetic concerns as well is a win-win situation.”