Significant growth in Westfield is requiring a new water tank booster system at 146th Street and Oak Ridge Road, raising concern from nearby residents.
Citizens Energy Group Corporate Communications Manager Dan Considine said no more public hearings are scheduled, and the tank is needed in the area because Westfield is one of the five fastest-growing communities in the state.
“Most of that growth is residential houses, so that’s the primary reason,” Considine said. “We had a lot of growth in that area, and we just need additional places to store water.”
Considine said a water system needs proper water pressure not only for residential use, but also to ensure proper pressure at the fire hydrants for fire protection.
“So, as we look at our system, we have water towers strategically located throughout the system to ensure proper water pressure for both residential service and fire protection,” Considine said. “That area just needs another tank, another storage vessel. That’s what this booster station will do. It’s got the tank and it has pumps to move the water throughout the system.”
A 40-foot-tall steel water tower was proposed for the booster station, but Citizens reevaluated its plans and went with a 22-foot-tall, 1-million gallon concrete water tank instead. Construction will begin in December and will be finished in spring 2022.
“We did have feedback from the community, and after getting some input from the community, we revised the design and are going with a shorter, wider tank,” Considine said.
Most of the residential feedback came from residents living in Legacy Oaks, a Pulte neighborhood at the northeast corner of 146th Street and Oak Ridge Road. Attempts to reach Pulte for a statement were unsuccessful.
“This isn’t going to be right up next to someone’s backyard,” Considine said. “A natural gas pipeline runs across the field, so there will be at least 300 feet between the edge of the property and anyone’s backyard. We try to work with the community. If people express concerns, we try to listen and do what we can to make changes, and we want to be good neighbors, and I think that’s what we’ve done here.”
The pumps will be stored in the building at the booster station and won’t run around the clock. Considine said people won’t hear the pumps from their home.
Considine said Citizens doesn’t need permission from the Westfield City Council to build the tank, but it did submit plans to the plan commission.
“They basically look at it to make sure we are landscaping it correctly and not creating any kind of drainage problem for the area. They don’t review whether we need it,” Considine said. “We try to cover it as much as we can.”
The new booster station will have a 1- to 2-foot-tall earthen berm surrounding the facility. Evergreen trees will be planted on the berm.
For more, visit citizensenergygroup.com.