City commission to vote to improve water treatment plant

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The city commission will vote on an expansion of the Manhattan water treatment plant at its meeting tonight in City Hall.

The proposed expansion is a capacity issue, said Eric Cattell, assistant director for planning.

“The city – we’re growing, and we’re making improvement to meet those demands,” Cattell said.

The water treatment plant is owned municipally.

The plan is located west of the intersection of North Third Street and Tuttle Creek Boulevard.

The improvements include adding a new disinfection/electrical building, pedestrian-access sidewalks and additional parking spaces, according to city staff.

Commissioner Bob Strawn said the new building will help meet the demand issue.

“It’s about a 30-percent increase in water capacity,” Strawn said.

The city commission also will vote on whether to enter into a franchise agreement with Westar Energy, Inc. as a part of its consent agenda. The old franchise agreement expired in January.

This franchise agreement allows Westar to continue operating in the city’s right of way. In return, Westar must pay a fee to the city.

The new agreement raises this fee from 3 percent of the company’s gross receipts to 4 percent, according to city staff.

The commission approved a first reading of the ordinance April 17.

Commissioners also will vote on an ordinance establishing a no-parking zone on Vista Lane, which is near the intersection of Manhattan Avenue and Claflin Road.

According to city staff, this ordinance came about when a Manhattan resident expressed concerns that there was not enough room for two-way traffic to maneuver a 90-degree horizontal curve on the road when there are cars parked on either side.

Also, studies performed by city staff showed that a fire truck would be unable to go around the curve during an emergency if there were cars parked there. The no-parking area will be on the southeast side of Vista Lane near the curve in the road.

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