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Sarasota News Leader September 20, 2013 Page 26 CHECK AND RECHECK flow. It would have redundancy, so if one part of the system failed or needed repairs, a paralLift Station 87 will handle about one-third of lel structure would be ready. For peak flows, Sarasota's sewage. If you live south of Fruitboth would operate. ville Road, you have a personal stake in the success of LS 87. It will handle as much as 2.7 Most of the city's sewage flows under the million gallons per day, every day. Failure is force of gravity, which means that as the pipe not an option. goes further, it has to go deeper. By the time But the old system did fail. Lift Station 7 made the collection pipes arrive at the site of the repeated discharges of raw sewage into Hud- new Lift Station 87, they must be significantly son Bayou, right past the home of now-City below the bottom of Hudson Bayou. Commissioner Susan Chapman. At times, this project has been her personal crusade — marshaling neighbors and neighborhoods — to force the city to acknowledge the failures and then push through a solution. To make that happen, the old contractor — without any prior experience — selected a technique called micro tunneling. While the reasons are in dispute (and in court), the contractor could not create the tunnel for the The solution was a new lift station, capable pipe. Eventually, he withdrew in a flurry of of handling up to 9.7 million gallons of peak lawsuits. Osprey Avenue was closed at Mound Street for months while work proceeded on the lift station project. Photo by Norman Schimmel

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