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May 11 - New City Reservoir Completed, Funded by the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project

Category: Local Govts & Politics

Savannah Business Journal Staff Report

May 11, 2018 - The City of Savannah is preparing to take ownership of a new reservoir that was built and funded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in connection with the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project.

The Corps of Engineers built the $40 million, 100-millon gallon reservoir as a solution to potential drinking water issues that could result from the deepening of the Savannah Harbor.

The City’s Chief Infrastructure and Development Officer, Heath Lloyd, said that this reservoir gives the City added assurance that our water customers will always have access to fresh water. “The Corps is deepening the channel of the harbor by approximately five feet and an extreme high spring tide could push salt water closer to our intake and if that salt water gets into our system then technically we have no way to treat it. The reservoir creates a pool of water, approximately 100 million gallons, so if we were to have one of these extreme high tide events, we would be able to pull from that reservoir during the high tide event and not pull salt water into our distribution system.”

The water for the reservoir flows from the Abercorn Creek, a tributary of the Savannah River. The reservoir is located near I-95 and Highway 21, approximately four miles north of the City’s water treatment facility.

“The water is flowing through the reservoir today, and it will continue to flow,” Lloyd said. “The 100 million gallon reservoir is constantly being replenished with fresh water so if we had an event, although I hope we never will, that water is immediately available to us.”

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineer is responsible for the construction of the reservoir. It is scheduled to be handed over to the City of Savannah by late summer. The City will then fund the anticipated $300,000 annual operating and maintenance costs.

“The City of Savannah is very much a part of everything that happens in this region, we want to be a partner, so in a partnership we understand that the Georgia Ports Authority is trying to get more cargo into the port, so it may seem that the city is taking on added responsibility, but it is important for this region that we support this project,” said Lloyd. 

SHEP reservoir


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