At the Hopewell Township planning board meeting last week, the planning board approved the application by Stony Brook Regional Sewage Authority (SBRSA) for the construction of improvements to the existing Pennington sewage treatment facility (also known as a “waste water management facility”) on Pennington-Rocky Hill Road in Pennington, NJ.
The site, located at 363 Pennington-Rocky Hill Road, is 8.7 acres with Pennington-Rocky Hill Road to the east of the property and farmland to the north of the property.
Currently, the site includes the main building settling tanks, oral aeration tanks, and parking and access areas. The plant is 32 years old and “needs upgrade equipment and processes and also in a new permit need to upgrade the treatment level for certain parameters such as process removal,” according to SBRSA executive director John Kantorek.
The approved “upgrade and expansion project” will expand the facility to add new primary settling tanks to the northern portion of the site, adding two new secondary settling tanks next to the current settling tanks and expanding the two existing oral aeration tanks. SBRSA also proposed some small accessory structures in support of the facility.
“In the early 2000’s, flows were starting to reach capacity,” explained Kantorek, by way of background, “So we started doing planning and spent significant time with Hopewell Township and Pennington Borough, and these flows are the flows they decided were needed. They looked at the zoning and lots, and in Hopewell looked at the future for the schools and along the parts of Hopewell Township that were to be served. They [Hopewell Township] looked at essentially two new areas to be included in the system: to the west of Hopewell Valley Central High School, that was not in the service area, and the tree streets where there are failing septics systems.”
Through NJDEP, SBRSA did a waste water management plan that showed a need to increase from 300,000 gallons per day to 445 gallons per day.
As part of the project, the planning board agreed with the proposed removal of 29 trees and will plant 40 replacement trees at 3″, with 40 trees lining the perimeter of the site. Staffing will remain, with one person on site. Lighting will be controlled by timers and will be 3500 degrees kelvin or lower.