Help May be on the Way for Maryville & Alcoa

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Blount County (WVLT) - A temporary water solution for the cities of Maryville and Alcoa could be on the way.

Volunteer TV's Stephen McLamb has been following the story from the beginning and has the latest.

It might cost $2 million dollars, but officials are seeking a permit to get water North of the Rockford Dam, where it is plentiful, and then dump it close to Alcoa's Water Treatment Plant.

At this hour they're waiting on state approval.

"We've given several warnings, but the warnings have even decreased because people know they can't use the water," said Pam Arnett, Maryville Public Information Officer.

But Maryville and Alcoa city officials are hoping those restrictions can soon be lifted.

A temporary plan is underway which would run a 24-inch water line.

"Just to get it in quickly, it would be laying on the top of the ground. Once we got the water flowing, then we would come back and bury it," said Kenny Wiggins, Alcoa Director of Engineering and Public Works.

Just over a mile from above the Rockford Dam of Little River down to the more shallow areas where Alcoa's Water Treatment Plant is located with the help of diesel pumps.

"We're in very good position to treat the extra water then convey it to Maryville," said Wiggins.

Last week, officials applied for a state permit for the plan.

"We're thinking it could be a matter of weeks till we have the temporary fix in place," said Wiggins.

Once the line is run, Maryville officials say it would just take some valving at their Bartlett pumping station.

"We could turn it on right now and pump about 12-hundred gallons a minute from Alcoa to Maryville, finished water," said Jeff Rose, Maryville Water Quality Control Director.

And some piping, once they have acquired a South Blount Water Pumping Station that is no longer in use.

"We would disconnect it from South Blount's system and then connect it to our system," said Rose.

Rose says Maryville still faces another obstacle in lifting restrictions in the plan; The state must also approve their request to continue pumping at their facility because of an endangered mussel.

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