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Area infrastructure stressed, breaking down

READ MORE: Area infrastructure stressed, breaking down
WILMINGTON -- The repairs to the northeast interceptor are a step in the right direction, but the area's infrastructure is still stressing and straining and in some cases, breaking down. Roads, bridges, sewer and water are things you ignore when they work as they should. But age is catching up with our infrastructure. Wilmington's now infamous sewer spills show what happens when the infrastructure breaks down. The city and New Hanover County have spent millions fixing it: relining old pipes so they don't leak, upgrading transfer stations, expanding wastewater treatment capacity -- the Northside plant expansion is a massive $80 million project. When completed by early next year, the plant's capacity will have doubled. Project manager Craig Lundin said, "We currently have a capacity of eight million gallons a day and we'll have 16 million when we're done." As massive as this expansion project is, it's been designed with an eye to further expansion. That combined with a renovation of the Southside plant should take us to 2020 and beyond. The renovated plant will also use new technology to create a cleaner, more efficient, and environmentally friendly water treatment process. "We're also switching over to ultraviolet for disinfectant from chlorine," Lundin said. "It's safer and we won't have to de-chlorinate the water before we discharge it into the river." They're even going to treat the air to improve the smell. And all of this will all now be under the control of a newly centralized sewer and water authority, a better way to handle the future we're told. Cape Fear Utility Director Matt Jordan said, "It really comes down to not only planning for what's best but taking advantage of what you've already invested in." In addition to the water we flush, the Cape Fear Utility Authority will also oversee the water we drink. Jordan calls it a holistic approach, and in the face of a daunting drought and unparalleled growth, he's looking for other ways. Jordan said, "We have to rethink the ways we do a lot of things. As far as water reuse, that's something that continues to grow and something that could be quite useful." It's frightfully expensive, as are most technological fixes. Conservation will remain the call for at least the near term as more and more people will compete for southeast North Carolina's water. Both ends of the water equation are critical to our public health and our future. Steve will have an update on our roads and bridges later this month as we continue our Cape Fear 2020 focus.

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Is this really news to anyone that lives here? It's like finally the media (who never wants to criticize our local government, have to go to Raleigh media for in depth coverage) is willing to even talk about it. What's worse is that our city council is a bunch of lame ducks. Focus on serving your citizens instead of yourself for awhile please. Your only idea to solve your $$ woes is to annex and bring in more unserviced citizens. Has Wilmington had enough yet of these self-serving career politicians?

Corruption Costs All of Us

It's not going to get any better now that there are Utility Authority Directors who have large pieces of land in Castle Hayne they want to develop but no sewer. Individuals like this particular developer and the corruption-prone cronies who rule the Authority can use their "authority" to build sewers to their planned subdivisions and MAKE ALL OF US PAY FOR IT!!! Watch your utility rates skyrocket in the years ahead. Corruption and convention centers have a price tag and taxpayer's get the bill.

Brunswick County

Brunswick County is seeing massive growth just like New Hanover saw in the 80s and 90s. Does our Planning Dpt see this? No way with the hundred's and thousands of new homes being built. WE DO NOT HAVE A SEWER SYSTEM TO HAVE A PROBLEM WITH !!!! All the Yankees need to pay heavy impact fees. Not long time residents!!

Too many Yankees flushing at

Too many Yankees flushing at the same time. The engineers who designed the system could not have anticipated all these Yankees. Thank God carpet bags are biodegradable.


It's not 1861 anymore and your side lost. NC was the last state to succeed and then lost more men than any other state. A little late and unprepared still it seems. Yankee is a Dutch term that meant English speakers seeking God. I'm sure you don't want to be associated with that. Now stop with 150 year old stupidity.

Succeed - Secede -- Whatever

There are many areas where North Carolina succeeds, at least in my opinion. Evidently no one ever taught you that improper spelling can change the entire meaning of your written statements. I'll not point out your missing punctuation, you have enough problems already.

You're right...

I certainly didn't mean succeed and you did mention my punctuation. I'm sure those will be the biggest problems I have all day. If only I had been taught things. There are areas where NC succeeds but the local infrastructure's still krunked up.

HA! That's classic!!!!

HA! That's classic!!!!

Y'all don't come back now, ya hear?

You must be a yankee to talk like that. You really don't understand. We locals really don't care much for outsiders (especially those from north of Virginia). It is not ignorance, it is a matter of taste. It is not a lack of education, we just really don't like you. So, get in your car, go back up north and shut up. By the way, the south was outgunned and out manned 1 to 5 even in the early years and it still took 5 years to get them to stop. And, I believe more yankees took the big dirt nap when the counting was done.

this is not the north vs the south

I would certainly agree with you that it isn't southern ignorance. I would say it was ignorance all around, but I still put the major blame on the city planners and the good ole boy system that still works in the city/county today. Ignoring it and hoping the problem goes away is has been the short sighted approach. If you want the northerners to go away, stop selling your land to developers (mostly southern I might add, and I know this from personal experience...) When Wilmington has sewage spills and water contamination rank at the same level as third world countries, there is an undeniable problem. I had to boil water ONCE when I lived up north and that was because of a water break down the road. I have had to boil my water TWICE THIS YEAR because of water conamination with fecal matter. Like it or not, its your problem, its my problem, its everyone's problem

Re: Yankee Thing

According to the History Channel, the term came from an insult of the Dutch, "John Cheese", because of their diet. Spoken in Dutch it sounds a little like Yankees. How true? Dunno. Any Dutch out there?

Yankee Thing

You are right 1861, the war is certainly over and the South did lose. Living your life as if the conflict is still playing out is probably not healthy. Negativity toward your fellow man is also not healthy. But many times when someone from the South says "yankee", they only mean a "newcomer". And yes, newcomers should pay more for some public development costs, than long time residents. I can understand some hostility on this point. This comes from not planning ahead AND establishing proper impact fees. Getting back to the war, North Carolina was also the last port to remain open for southern supplies. I guess the blockade runner mentality also survives!

When I say yankee

When I say "Yankee" it is used to describe person(s) that have moved in down here, act like they still live up there, b*tch like they want things like it was up there, moan and cry about the Southerners, stew over what somebody else does in their own backyard, and just generally is hate filled for everything down here. Go bleeping back North. Everything negative about the South has been imported from the North except maybe mosquitoes. Now for the polite, sweet, kind, nice and generally positive attitude Northerners, love to have you. But couldn't you leave your less than desirable cousins behind?


The city fathers are openly discussing and trying to solve our sewer problems because there is no other way. Spewing raw sewer gets your attention. Not to mention that the state had to call us down for the many sewer spills into the area waterways. For the most part,the city council would rather approve development, than improve infrastructure. The city council would rather spend tax money on convention centers than necessary public know the ones that are supposed to come first. Wilmington, don't get too flush happy!

It can't be that simple

If it's as simply as pointing a finger at the city councel for making a bad choice by continuing to develop instead of improving what has already been built .... why arn't more people pointing to make this happen? It does not take an inteligent person to see this town's compacity has been exceeded. Simply driving 10 miles from one point of the wilmington triangle to another takes 45 minutes on an average day. However, the streets are another issue. My opinionated discussion of the day is this; New Hanover County is considered one of the most Naturally beauitful, well known places on the Eastern United States. I know this for a fact because i do stock photography and have been contacted by several stock agencies over the winter for "destination Wilmington" images to sell to this years travel magazines. What makes this area so wonderful is being destroyed by developing. In addition to housing, buildings like PPD downtown is constructed very well if it where placed in the Mytle Beach area but how does having a building like that contribute to our cities title "Historic Downtown". Isn't the historic aspect what makes downtown stand out from others? I see more like it poping up in the next few years now that the standard has been reset to larger construction and soon it will simply be "Downtown" like any other city. The Point ... who do we need to pay to keep people from building and start putting more funding into the wast management funds? I'm a photographer here in wilmington. I've been hired many times to go up in helicoptors and photograph land for developers. What bothers me isn't that they're building it's where. The last job i had was for building over marsh land. When i asked the developer "isn't that illigal" ... he responded with "depends on the price tag". I was quoted 10 years/2 billion dollars for the project in question. The plan was to build board walks over the mash to avoid the politics. In my oppinion that's just as bad as bringing in bulldozers. I ended the last job with a conversation on how my favorite creek for catching bait between Wilmington and Carolina Beach was to be turned into a caneo park for tourist to help sell the land beside the marsh for housing. Someone better do somthing or This beautiful place will be North Carolina's Myrtle Beach.