Mt. Pleasant searching to save big

money and find more culinary water

 

By James Tilson

Staff writer

Feb. 1, 2018

 

MT. PLEASANT—Councilman Justin Atkinson told the Mt. Pleasant City Council during its meeting last week about an opportunity to save the city tens of thousands of dollars in its search for a new culinary water source.

Atkinson told the council at the meeting on Thursday, Jan. 25, he had been approached by a developer about a new potential culinary well site.

The developer, which Atkinson did not want to identify at the time, was working on land in Mt. Pleasant’s buffer zone, and this developer told Atkinson he was preparing to drill a well on his property at a cost of $30,000.

This developer offered to let the city have access to the water if a sufficient quantity was found, in return for providing half of the drilling costs.

The area was a 40-acre plot on land located near where water consultant Bill Sorensen had recommended to the city last year of drilling a test well.

Atkinson said he was intrigued by the offer.

The city has been actively searching for new sources for culinary water for more than two years, and Atkinson himself has been in favor of drilling test wells to look for new sources.

However, plans to drill test wells have been stymied by the high bids previously requested by the city, up to as much as $120,000.

Atkinson reminded the council of the perils of drilling a culinary water well without a test well: “Even though $25,000 to $30,000 is a lot of money, compared to drilling a full production well worth $1 million which has no water, it is much more economical.”

Councilman Kevin Stallings pointed out that if the city co-sponsored the well, the well diameter would be 8 inches in diameter, not the usual 6 inches for a residential development.

Atkinson agreed that the well diameter would be bigger and would probably raise the price of the well to as much as $50,000.

However, the cost would still be a great savings to the city, and the developer offered to lease the well property to the city for 99 years at $1 a year, as long as the city installed a water line to his development.

Stallings stated he would like to have Sorensen scout the location and also have Atkinson find out more about the cost of the potential well.

Atkinson agreed to contact the developer to get a firm estimate and report back to the council.