On Feb. 5, a groundbreaking ceremony was held for Brandenburg’s new $8.3 million state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant.
The new plant was deemed essential after Nucor announced its plan to build a $1.7 billion steel plate manufacturing mill.
“Brandenburg had a serious need,” said Mayor Ronnie Joyner. “We had to build a new wastewater treatment plant that could handle not only the present, but also the future needs of the city. We needed to explore all of our options to find the quickest and most cost-effective way to build this plant.”
A 2016 law (HB309) authorized local governments to take advantage of public-private partnerships (P3). The P3 delivery method allows private companies to participate more fully in local infrastructure projects, including using private sector funding.
Frost Brown Tod was the city’s P3 consultant and helped guide the city through the process. The Walker Company, a Kentucky-based design and construction firm, in partnership with GRW Engineers Inc. and WP3 consulting, was selected as the design/build contractor. Ross, Sinclaire and Associates provided the necessary financing in partnership with the Kentucky League of Cities Financial Services and the Kentucky Bond Corporation.
A third-party study found that Brandenburg’s P3 approach will save the city upwards of $3.5 million in costs and a year in project delivery time.
Brandenburg’s existing facility is a lagoon, which is a more passive system that tends to have issues in cold weather, and it is not meeting state requirements. The new facility will have an extended aeration activated sludge process. The facility will allow room for expansion – capacity can be easily doubled when the need arises. It will also have a smaller footprint, better capabilities in low temperature, and technology that allows future modifications.