Emergency Preparedness for Pump Station Improvements

PRO-ACTIVE COST-EFFICIENCY 

For years, the City of Sturgis Department of Public Services (DPS) staff kept the old Market Street pump station operational amid safety issues/concerns. The station, built in the 1950s had a unique design in which the pumps, valves and controls were in the dry well, directly above the influent wet well. The steel floor had become so soft that DPS staff feared falling through.

Fleis & VandenBrink (F&V) engineers found the aging Market Street pump station was even worse for wear during a sanitary sewer assessment while preparing the City’s Asset Management Plan (AMP), The pump station, which had some updates in 1958 and 1991, was now on the brink of total failure.

City officials and engineers responded quickly to the ‘red alarm’ alert. All the project timetables – from designs to the bidding phases –  were accelerated to avoid failure and imminent disaster for the 250 homes affected by the Market Street pump station before the holidays and cold weather. Waiting till the next spring was not an option.

The urgency started with preparation of the basis of design for the station. A creative idea was developed to keep the existing station in operation while the new station was constructed adjacent to it. This eliminated the need for long term bypass pumping and mitigated risk should the bypass pumping fail. Engineers also suggested that the City use the MDEQ’s expedited review option and received the needed Part 41 Construction Permit in only 10 days, which allowed the bidding process to begin earlier.

F&V provided design and construction engineering for a new 360 gpm submersible pump, 66-feet of influent gravity sewer and 814-feet of force main and other equipment.

The new Market Street pump station not only addresses future flows, it provides residents of Sturgis several benefits, including: more efficient pumps with less energy and maintenance; increased safety for workers; and keeping sewage flowing away from home owner’s basements.

City officials also played it smart by replacing and installing new concrete sidewalks at minimal cost during the project, preserving some funds for future Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) needs. The new sidewalks were ADA accessible, creating more community connectivity and an enhanced experience for all users. With more options for walking, Sturgis is now a healthier community.

The project won the APWA-SW MI “2018 Project of the Year” in the Emergency/Disaster Preparedness category.