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Assessments being taken for pipeline project

Comments, regarding the environmental impact of a potential pipeline project in three North Dakota counties, are now being taken.

The project, which would encompass areas in the Oliver, Mercer, and North Dunn County regional Area of the South West Pipeline Project, is being engineered by Bartlett and West of Bismarck.

"The project will be taking off a new treatment plant north of Zap," said James Landenberger of Bartlett and West. "It will be serving those customers in those counties with the new treatment plant."

Landenberger said the project would ultimately provide water to over 1,000 rural residences, along with the cities of Hazen, Stanton, Center, Pick City and Zap.

"We're looking at a 10 to 12 year timeline for the ultimate completion for the project pending funding," Landenberger said.

Bartlett and West have been involved with other Southwest Water Authority projects in the past, he added.

Comments that come in regarding the environment, wildlife or botany will be looked into first, Landenberger said.

"Also if there is any kind of federal agency that we have to take a closer look at like the forest service, they will usually require us to do a more in-depth analysis," Landenberger said. "Most of our grasslands work was done in the Medora and Beach phase."

Mary Massad, CEO and manager of the Southwest Water Authority, said the environmental assessment is a required part of the project.

"Sometimes there are environmental issues that need to be addressed," Massad said. "Hopefully everything will go smoothly."

Engineers are moving forward with a final design for the water treatment plant, Massad said, as well as final designs for the main transmission line.

"I am hopeful that can begin this year," Massad said.

Landenberger doesn't foresee any issues environmentally with this project, he said, and hasn't received any responses yet.

Comments regarding environmental impacts of the project will be taken until Feb. 20. Questions or comments may be directed to either Jame Todd or James Landenberger at 701-258-1110, or by mail: Bartlett and West, Attn: Jame Todd, 3456 East Century Avenue, Bismarck, ND., 58503.