Ryan Scott Ottney
PDT Staff Writer
NEW BOSTON — The village of New Boston said crews working for the state of Ohio are working now to fix a problem that limits the village access to sewer manholes on the terrace next to New Boston School.
According to Village Administrator Steve Hamilton, the school construction plans that were originally submitted to him by the Ohio School Facilities Commission (OSFC) used holding tanks to retain displaced water. During construction it was found that the school needed additional holding space, and the plan was redesigned to use the terrace next to the New Boston Stadium as a holding pond. Those redesigned plans did not include an access road to the two manhole covers on the terrace, and the village never saw or approved the new plans, Hamilton said.
The only access to the manhole, he said, is a six-foot wide dirt road which is not wide enough for village trucks to access. Without that access, Hamilton said the village would not be able to clean them out to prevent sewage backing up into the basements of nearby homes and even the new school.
Hamilton brought the issue to the New Boston School Board on Dec. 20, and said he was told he needed to take it to the Ohio School Facilities Commission. New Boston Superintendent Mike Staggs said the OSFC was in charge of construction, and only they could resolve this issue.
“It’s all construction, and we weren’t in charge of construction. We have no control over that at all. It’s completely out of our hands,” Staggs said.
Rick Savors, media relations manager for the OSFC, said the commission has asked the civil engineer from Solid Rock Construction to take a look at the situation and develop options for addressing it. On Friday, crews from Solid Rock were digging out top soil around the manholes for a gravel road.
“They took out about 3-foot of earth and put about 3-foot of compaction material, then they put another two-foot of compaction material on top of it. Now they’re up there rolling it in right now. They’ll put some felt covering down so the bank won’t slide, then they put down some big number two’s (rock) this morning. They went all the way down to clay, because they tried to put it down on top soil but our truck is too heavy. So they dug down into the clay where it’s real hard,” Hamilton said.
He said the state of Ohio and Solid Rock Construction have been very cooperative and helpful getting this project completed, and said this will create a strong road on which village trucks can drive to access and clean the sewers.
“Billy Whitaker, with Solid Rock, he told me that he’ll stay until he gets it almost perfect for us because he knows we have to get that truck in there,” Hamilton said.
Solid Rock Construction also re-installed a guard rail on Lakeview Avenue near the school, which was removed during construction.
“They haven’t done nothing but just be helpful,” Hamilton said.
Ryan Scott Ottney can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 287, or firstname.lastname@example.org.