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Posted 10/23/2013

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By Brenda Beasley
Public Affairs

It’s not sexy, but it’s the greatest thing for the county,” said DeSoto County Board of Supervisors President Mark Gardner, “And it’ll open doors for DeSoto County’s future growth.”

Local, state and federal officials turned out Sept. 5 to celebrate the official opening of the $13.8 million Johnson Creek Wastewater Treatment Facility on its 40-acre site in Walls, Miss.

Paired with the Short Fork facility on the east side, this west side facility forms one unified countywide system.

The Short Fork facility came online in 2006 at a cost of $16 million, said USACE Project Engineer Tracy James. The entire wastewater system in DeSoto County is estimated to cost more than $100 million once interceptor lines and pipelines are completed to serve newly expanded areas of the county’s wastewater system.

Designed to meet the needs of western DeSoto County for the next 20 years, this environmental infrastructure project provides for adequate treatment of increased wastewater allowing the county to be in compliance with water quality certification, added James.

With completion of this facility, four antiquated and poor-performing facilities in the Walls and Horn Lake areas were shut down and their flow diverted to this new facility for treatment.

“This new facility takes you from 50-year-old technology using outdated sewage lagoons and replaces it with a stateof-the-art facility that is fully compliant with modern water quality and wastewater treatment standards,” said Memphis District Commander Col. Jeffery A. Anderson.

As the local sponsor, DeSoto Country Regional Utility Authority has primary responsibility for all work with the Federal cost share of 75 percent being provided in the form of reimbursements. Federal participation in the entire countywide system will be restricted by the authorization
limit, which is currently $75 million.

Max Foote Construction of Birmingham, Ala., was the prime contractor and the Pickering Firm designed the facility with up-to-date, energy-efficient equipment and processes that will provide a treated effluent, significantly minimizing environmental impact while at the same time reducing operating and maintenance costs.

DCRUA contracted with the British firm of Severn Trent to manage the county’s wastewater treatment operations for its five municipal members: Olive Branch, Southaven, Hernando, Horn Lake and Walls.

The state-of-the-art facility will give the people of this fastest growing region of Mississippi a highly efficient and environmentally friendly wastewater treatment facility that will serve the citizens of the community for decades to come.