James Rada, Jr.
(3/1) The water returned to the
environment from a proposed wastewater
treatment plant that is part of the Myers farm
annexation request would be cleaner than the
water in Owens Creek.
John Smith, senior project manager with
Morris and Ritchie Associates, said that the
level of nitrogen and phosphorus levels in the
effluent from the wastewater treatment plant
would be “below what you would find in many
streams naturally occurring.”
Because Thurmont is under a consent
agreement with the Maryland Department of the
Environment to limit the additions to its
sewer system, part of the Myers farm
annexation request stated that the development
would have its own 100,000-gallon-capacity
wastewater treatment plant.
The state-of-the-art plant would have a
small enough footprint that it could be
disguised within a barn shell. The
construction cost is around $2 million and the
average annual operating costs would be
Developer Tom Hudson said that six years
from build out of the proposed development,
“This thing would start turning positive cash
flow.” This would come from the difference
between water usage fees minus the operating
costs. At this point, the plant would be
turned over to the town.
The plant would meet Maryland’s tougher
enhanced nutrient removal standards (nitrogen:
3.0 mg/l, phosphorus: 0.3 mg/l). Smith said
the water from the plant could be used for
irrigation around the development.
“It’s probably as clean as what you’ll find
in Owens Creek,” Smith said.
The Thurmont Commissioners are expected to
vote on the annexation request in early March.