Bath council puts $3.8M landfill project on ballot

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BATH — The City Council on Wednesday unanimously sent a $3.8 million landfill construction bond to a Nov. 8 referendum.

The city also awarded a contract for the city’s fiscal 2017 paving program, and announced that it had finalized the sale of land on Andrews Road to a Portland developer.

The Maine Department of Environmental Protection nearly 15 years ago awarded the city a license to build and run a landfill. The second phase of the project is expected to be full by late 2017, requiring Phase 3, Public Works Director Peter Owen told the council Wednesday.

Along with Phase 3 construction at the north end of the landfill, the project would include a permanent cover on the south end and landfill gas infrastructure.

The new disposal cell, to be opened next fall, would provide space for about 12 years.

“This is the cheapest alternative,” City Manager Bill Giroux said. “… This is opposed to trucking (the waste) to a faraway landfill or incinerator.”

The council also authorized a nearly $263,000 contract with Hagar Enterprises of Damariscotta for this fiscal year’s paving program. The funds come from a $2.5 million street bond approved in 2014.

Streets included in the contract include the entire length of Marshall Avenue, Raymond Court and Robinson Street; parts of Edwards Street (Washington Street to Carriage House Lane); Old Brunswick Road (from a culvert to Oak Grove Avenue); Whiskeag Road (golf course to North Bath Road); Washington Street (Bowery to York streets), and behind Bath Public Works.

Giroux also reported late in the meeting that Portland-based Szanton Co. – which plans to develop nearly 60 mixed-income residential apartments in the former Huse School – closed Wednesday on its acquisition of the Andrews Road property.

The new apartments are expected to open next year, with almost half to be built in a new northeast wing.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.