WRH, Inc. will be conducting the Wastewater Treatment Plant upgrades for the city of Pella.

City officials awarded the contract to the company during a council meeting on Feb. 4. The city considered bids from two other companies, both ranging from $6.1 to $6.2 million. The accepted bid from WRH, Inc. is $5,998,000 for the project.

The company, based out of Amana, is a general construction contracting company that specializes in wastewater treatment and heavy civil construction.

Upgrades to the plant are required to meet the new Iowa Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) permit, which now includes more rigorous requirements for ammonia, E. coli and dissolved oxygen. Additionally, the city says they need to address several plant repairs to maintain effective operations for the next 20 years.

City staff originally believed the overall wastewater rate increase necessary to fund the project would be 25-30 percent. However, the city now says the rate increase will be approximately 35 percent. The rate increase will cost each home in Pella an extra $3-4 per month.

The completion date for the project is slated for Oct. 29, 2021.

In other news:

- A public hearing date of Feb. 18 has been set to extend construction deadlines for the South Main Housing Development. The developer of the project made the request due to construction delays.

- Representatives from the State Historic Preservation Office gave a presentation to council regarding the Certified Local Government Program (CLG). Acceptance into the CLG Program would make the city eligible for funding, training, technical assistance and access to a supportive network of other preservation-minded communities.

- City officials approved their first reading of an ordinance that would change the zoning at 405 Truman Road from Light Industrial to Community Commercial. An application was submitted by Jacque Zondervan, co-owner of Bruxvoort’s Decorating Center, with the intention of moving the business into the fieldhouse currently housing De Kinderen Huis.

Emily Hawk can be reached at ehawk@pellachronicle.com or by calling the newsroom at 641-628-3882.

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