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story.lead_photo.caption FILE: Bernie Nadler, left, probes the dirt Sept. 23 as Jason McDonald uses a locator to find utility lines during sewer construction at the corner of Nieman and Halifax roads in Holts Summit. Photo by India Garrish / Fulton Sun.

The Holts Summit Board of Aldermen held a special meeting Dec. 17 to discuss a change order for the city's ongoing wastewater improvement project, which is set to be completed in February 2022.

During the meeting, held virtually, the board authorized adding an additional $14,062.50 to the now $5,921,161.50 project with Ryan Construction LLC to change five residential electric meter bases — eight homes required specific connectors to water pump units in the lines.

"Out of the 100 homes that will be served with the project, there's about eight of them that (can't solely use) the gravity sewer, so they have to have a pump to the gravity sewer main," Sewer Superintendent Keith Edwards said.

Now that the project is in the connections phase, getting the right meter bases for each home is crucial — due to the terms of the construction contract, the contractor will need to swap out the current bases for the new connection types.

Stephen Lin, of All State Consultants, said there would be no additional liability to the city due to this change. Five will be external connections to the meter base, while three will not need a different base due to the accessibility to the breaker box.

Edwards specified that this is not a service upgrade for certain homes, but  it is a necessary change to make sure all residents involved are properly connected to the sewer main. He said the bases also provide an extra level of safety as workers can connect and disconnect the line for repairs without using live electricity.

Since the meeting Thursday, Edwards said, the parts have been ordered, and they hope to have them installed and wired up by mid-January.

In September, another change order was authorized for part of Halifax Road to be uncovered for work on a water line at the intersection of Halifax, Nieman Road and Major Terrace. Now, all but one section of the road has been poured in — the section remaining is covered with gravel and won't be completely paved until the line to Jefferson City is completed. The crew will use this space to fill the pressure main with water to test it.

Now that construction has moved off the main roads, Edwards said, there have not been any construction zones or route changes for commuters.

"It's moving along pretty well," he said. "Now that it's off the road, it shouldn't affect holiday travel."

So far, the timeline for the completion of the sewer project has been ahead of schedule, Edwards said, but he doesn't know how winter weather — which could bring frozen ground or wet mud — could affect the project. Ideally, he hopes construction will be completed by fall 2021.

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