Developers seek permit for new sewer plant at Coolfont

by Kate Shunney

Owners of the core pieces of property once known as the Coolfont Resort near Berkeley Springs are seeking discharge permits to build and operate a new sewer treatment plant at the former resort.

Larry Omps, manager of Berkeley Springs Development LLC, and the Warm Springs Public Service District have applied for a West Virginia National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Water Pollution Control Permit from the state’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

A public notice about the application and a 20-day public comment period, was published in the December 5 issue of this paper.

Members of the public have until December 25 to submit comments to the West Virginia DEP about the project, or to ask for a public hearing on it.

Berkeley Springs Development LLC is looking for approval to build a wastewater treatment facility for Coolfont Village, listed on the application as a subdivision.

The treatment plant would process sewerage for a population of roughly 312 people, the permit application says. Developers of the property estimate the plant would process 25,000 gallons of wastewater per day. The plant could handle a maximum daily flow of 200,000 gallons of wastewater.

Treated water from the plant would be discharged into Sir Johns Run, 5.8 miles from the mouth of the Potomac River.

The treatment plant being proposed would be an “activated sludge membrane reactor” plant. The entire system would include 2,964 linear feet of four-inch sewer line, 1,965 linear feet of six-inch gravity sewer line, 1,120 linear feet of two-inch force main, 15 manholes, 20 cleanouts and one duplex grinder station.

The system would include a 25,000 gallon settling tank, 10,000 gallon flow equalization tank, a 20,000 gallon reactor, a 10-ft. diameter secondary clarifier and an ultraviolet (UV) disinfection system.

The permit application specifies that the developer and sewer system operator would make a daily inspection of the UV disinfection system, and perform monthly testing for levels of suspended solids, coliform, pH, dissolved oxygen, phosphorous and ammonia nitrogen.

Omps and associates purchased several tracts of the former Coolfont property at auction in June 2016. Renovations at buildings that were part of the former resort have been underway for more than a year under a building permit issued by the Morgan County Planning Office.

Omps has not responded to multiple requests from The Morgan Messenger to answer questions about plans for the resort or offer a timeline for the opening of facilities there.