SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - The City of Savannah will soon have 100-million gallons of water to back up city water supplies.
Forty-million dollars of the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project was set aside and went into the creation of that reservoir, because of how SHEP could affect Savannah's water supply.
The city's chief infrastructure and development officer explained this reservoir is part of the partnership between Savannah, Army Corps of Engineers and Georgia Ports.
"So here is what I'm here to tell council. Not only did we work with the Army Corps of Engineers and the Georgia Ports, we now are close to being the proud owners of a $40-million reservoir. They call it an impoundment. That will significantly help us with our water treatment process, specifically as it relates to the deepening of the harbor," said Heath Lloyd, Chief Infrastructure and Development Officer.
By deepening the harbor five feet, there are potential side effects that could impact Savannah's water supply.
"What will happen is, during high spring tides, it could push a saltwater wedge toward our well water intake, and if that salt water gets into our system, then technically we have no way to treat it," Llyod said.
Lloyd says the 100-gallons is ready to go, and once the city officially takes the facility over, it'll be up to council members to budget for the operation costs, estimated to be $300,000 a year.
"So yes, it may seem as though the city, we have to have added responsibility, but it's also important for this region that we support each other. Whether that's the city of Savannah or the Port, in everything that happens in this region, so that's why it's positive," Llyod said.
Again, this 100-million gallon reservoir is ready to go and will be transferred over to Savannah in late summer.