Dellwood sewer work can’t begin yet

Published 8:48pm Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Sewer lines in Dallas County’s rural Dellwood community can’t be unclogged just yet.

Though the Dallas County commission approved a $300,000 sewer project for the 50-home community in early July, It can’t begin without property owners’ permission, said commissioner Larry Nickles.

The commission needs each property owner in the area to sign off on an easement — essentially a permission slip — that would allow contractors from Suncoast Infrastructure to unclog and replace pipes on private property, Nickles said.

“We are trying to get the project in quick before the weather changes in October and November,” he said. “We hope it will be done by mid-October. If not, it may have to wait until next year.”

The problems stem mostly from 30-year old, outdated lines, said James Anderson Sr., who lives in the area.

The Dellwood subdivision was built in the mid-1970s on Dallas County Roads 911 and 912.

At the time, sewer pipes were 8-inches wide, according to Nickles. As time progressed, debris built up inside the sewer lines, decreasing the total capacity, and causing pipes to back up into residents’ yards.

“When it rains for two or three days, some of the houses in our neighborhood have water back up into them,” Anderson said. “When it rains, we’ve even had snakes in our neighbor’s houses.”

Cara Stallman, the county’s grant administrator, said work on the main sewer line could begin without easements. Suncoast contractors could technically begin work without easements from all of Dellwood’s residents, Stallman said. Though, she said contractors wouldn’t replace pipes on any property without an easement.

“We will just inform the contractor that they can’t go on to that particular property,” she said.

Nickles said a meeting will be held at 6 p.m. Monday at Rising Star Church to secure easement agreements.

County officials and contractors will meet next week for a pre-construction meeting, Stallman said. She said a 2014 completion date is reasonable.

Anderson said the sewer project’s completion would be important for the rural community, but there are still a few issues that need to be solved.

“We are taking it one step at a time,” Anderson said. “I’m glad that [Nickles] has been working with us. He has listened to all of our concerns and done a good job of trying to find solutions.”

The Dellwood sewer project is paid for through a $350,000 grant received in November 2013 through the Alabama Department of Economic and Community affairs.


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