Water will soon reach Wilsonville

By AMY GORDON / Staff Writer

A water line along Highway 145 that will transport water from Columbiana to Wilsonville should be completed within two weeks, said Wilsonville Mayor Rosemary Liveoak.

John Farr Jr., chairman of the Columbiana Water Board, cautioned that completion of the project is dependent on weather conditions in the next few weeks.

“Rain always puts everything off for a day or two,” he said.

There are two more phases still to be completed in the building project. Phase two is a 500,000-gallon storage tank that is being built in Wilsonville, and phase three is a water line to run from the storage tank back to the Wilsonville main water system.

Wilsonville is borrowing between $1.2 and $1.6 million to pay for the building project, Liveoak said.

Once the water line along Highway 145 is complete, water will be able to flow to Wilsonville, despite the fact that neither of the other two phases will be complete.

“Once we get connected to Columbiana, we’re fine,” Liveoak said.

The building project is three weeks behind schedule because the town had to get permits and get them approved, Liveoak said.

Wilsonville is buying a minimum amount of 144,000 gallons of water a day from Columbiana. Wilsonville is buying the water because the town has only one well, which was dangerously low before the recent rainfalls.

“When you drill 19 holes, and they all turn up dry, you have to go to other sources to buy water,” Liveoak said. “We were in a dry condition for a couple of years. We’re still in a dry condition.”

Officials for Wilsonville signed a 20-year contract last year to buy additional water from Columbiana as needed. The well will still be the primary water source for Wilsonville’s 823 water consumers.

Farr said the deal is beneficial to both Columbiana and Wilsonville.

“They really need the additional water to meet their growing demands, and we had the water available,” he said. “It’s good for both sides.”

Wilsonville is still in a state of water conservation, Liveoak said.

“People are not to water their lawns, not to wash their cars,” she said. “I think we’re all still aware we have to be good conservationists to protect our well.”

People may have an easier time adhering to the rules because of the recent rains, she said.

“I know my grass is growing like crazy,” she said. “I can’t keep it cut.