Despite Heat, Wastewater Treatment Plant Getting New Landscaping
Despite the heat and drought, new plants are on their way to West U.’s wastewater treatment plant along the bayou. Several S. Braeswood-area residents showed up at a recent city council meeting concerned about the aesthetics of the plant after city staff removed decades worth of vegetation from around the plant and replaced the fence.
Public Works Director Chris Peifer said the vegetation – which had grown through the fence surrounding the plant – has been used several times as a “mounting platform” for burglars who have stolen computers and other equipment from the facility.
The new planting will include ten live oak trees, three Japanese blueberry trees, and yaupon holly shrubs at six foot intervals along the concrete basin walls. The urban forester has determined that it is feasible to plant the trees and shrubs under current weather conditions providing they are watered daily.
The city is currently acquiring parts for an automated irrigation system which will use recycled water from the treatment plant. The watering system is scheduled for installation next week, after which sod will be installed on the bank to control erosion. The trees are expected to be planted in the next two or three weeks, with the shrubs in place three or four weeks after the trees, after replacement of one foot of clay with select top soil at the site.
The new vegetation should help decrease odors from the plant, and the city has plans to replace the Belt Press and upgrade the aeration process, which should decrease odors as well, said Peifer.