Avon gets money to melt snow | VailDaily.com
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Avon gets money to melt snow

Matt Terrellmterrell@vaildaily.comAvon, CO Colorado

AVON, Colorado The Eagle River Water & Sanitation District board will give the town of Avon, Colorado $332,400 to build a system that uses heat from the agencys wastewater treatment plant to melt snow on future streets and sidewalks in its renovated downtown.The energy may also be used to heat the pool at the Avon Recreation Center.The town had asked the district for $1.3 million, about 40 percent of the cost. The district had previously given the town $90,000 for design and a feasibility study, but was still debating how big a role it wanted in the project, and how much the project could benefit the district.The board ended up deciding that possible benefits to the district such as installing snow melt at some of the treatment plants parking areas, heating a portion of the plant, lowering the temperature of wastewater effluent returned to the Eagle River, and increasing available heat for treatment werent worth 40 percent of the cost.After reviewing the possible benefits to the district and the costs associated with them, the board determined that some of the benefits evaluated for the district are cost prohibitive said Eagle River Water and Sanitation District board chairman Bob Warner. We support Avons vision of putting the heat created by the treatment process to beneficial use. The benefits to Avon are clear and financially viable. The board decided that the benefits to the district were of limited value, Warner said. The board still believes it will see some benefits. The system will cool down water before its put back in the Eagle River, and cooler water is better for fish and the environment. However, the plant doesnt have to meet any regulations regarding water temperature. Future state rules are expected, but the board decided to address those when theyre known.The district still sees promise in improving the efficiency of its wastewater treatment. There are stages of sludge processing that require lots of heat, and reusing heat could make everything more efficient.The board recognizes the tremendous potential for Avon, but chose to limit the districts contribution to those elements of the project that have an identified cost benefit, Warner said. The district will also allow Avon the use of the heat source and real property at the wastewater treatment plant.The town was recently awarded a $1.5 million grant from the state for programs that promote energy efficiency.Staff Writer Matt Terrell can be reached at 970-748-2955 or mterrell@vaildaily.com.


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