Hempstead Village is to receive $1.22 million in state funds to renovate a troublesome portion of its aging sewer infrastructure before the village's downtown revitalization.
The downtown build out could bring more than 1.1 million gallons of wastewater per day into the nearly 100-year-old system that has drainage and backup issues.
State Deputy Assembly Speaker Earlene Hooper (D-Hempstead) helped secure the initial funding for the proposed $9.17 million, five-year project to install polyvinyl chloride lining, a flexible form of plastic, in sewer lines that have severe problems south of Front Street, village officials said.
"The sewer system is very old, and any day, especially with the rainstorm, one of you is going to wake up and find in your living room foreign matter, and you are not going to be pleased," Hooper told a crowd of 50 people at a recent community meeting.
Mayor Wayne J. Hall Sr. said the village's sewers require significant upgrade and renovation to improve the effectiveness of a system worn by age, usage and obstructions.
"The whole thing has been neglected for years," said Hall, whose public works department spends about $1 million a year maintaining the sewage system. "The rehabilitation is going to make a big difference because if you don't do it, you're not going to able to build downtown. Because right now the capacity cannot handle all that redevelopment."
The initial lines to be repaired are in residential areas; developers of the downtown project would be responsible for upgrades north of Front Street.
In the first phase, the village will work off a priority list to repair more than 7,500 feet of sewer lines over a year, public works department director Frank Germinaro said. The village, incorporated in 1853, has about 85 miles of sewer line made of vitrified clay pipe and in some cases wood, he said.
"This is a multiyear, multi-installment type of thing," said attorney Lance D. Clarke, a former village justice who helped obtain the funding. "We are going to try to get this money every year."
The rehabilitation process involves cleaning the lines, making repairs and installing the lining, Germinaro said. Lining the pipes is less expensive than replacing them and can be done without ripping up streets, he said. "What the lining does is eliminate infiltration of tree roots and rainwater, which reduces the amount of stormwater that flows into the system," Germinaro said.
In addition, Nassau County expects by year's end to complete a $20 million project that would improve the performance of the county's and the village's waste treatment collection system, said Mike Martino, spokesman for the Nassau County Department of Public Works.
The plan involves improving a village pumping station and constructing a new pump station to replace another. A new force main, which uses pressure to move wastewater, would be installed between both stations and a second main would divert sewage to the county's Cedar Creek Water Pollution Control Plant in Wantagh from the Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant, he said.
Hempstead Village's proposed sewer system improvements
First year improvements to five high-priority sewer-line sections:
Lining cost: $1.22 million
Pipe length: 7,525 feet
Improvement of sewer lines with severe problems south of Front Street:
Option A — Lining cost: $9.17 million
Option B — Replacement cost: $32.71 million
Pipe length: 53,123 feet
Improvement of all sewer lines south of Front Street:
Option A — Lining cost: $36.38 million
Option B — Replacement cost: $125.12 million
Improvement of all sewer lines in the village:
Option A — Lining cost: About $100 million
Option B — Replacement cost: About $350 million
Source: Hempstead Village