Fort Oglethorpe officials are seeking bids on a $1.6 million sewer rehabilitation project and feeling confident about moving forward with other planned work, City Manager Ron Goulart said.
"When that is finished," he said, "it will lead us right into phase 2 and 3 of the West Chickamauga Interceptor sewer project."
The project got the go-ahead after Fort Oglethorpe and Ringgold officials signed an agreement dividing the county, giving each city the responsibility to provide sewer service for specific areas.
Council members of both cities set north/south-running Boynton Ridge as the dividing line. Ringgold is responsible for territory east of the ridge, and Fort Oglethorpe for the west.
Catoosa County commissioners voted to support the agreement and work with both cities to ultimately get sewer service to all residents in the unincorporated areas of the county.
"That is the easiest thing we've ever done," Commissioner Ken Marks said. "They have agreed on boundaries and we are backing that up."
County officials also agreed to give Fort Oglethorpe officials authority to decide how to spend SPLOST funds earmarked for the city's sewer projects.
"This is the first time I've seen this kind of harmony among these three groups," Fort Oglethorpe Councilman Johnnie "Red" Smith said.
The sewer boundary runs along Cloud Springs Road, starting at U.S. Highway 41 North, to Interstate 75, Exit 353. The line continues south to Battlefield Parkway east of Dietz Road, then zigs along the road before turning south roughly parallel along the west side of Burning Bush Road.
In phases 2 and 3 of the West Chickamauga Interceptor, Fort Oglethorpe will build 11,000 feet of sanitary sewer lines, picking up from Cloud Springs Road at I-75 and traveling south to Mitchell Acres, where the city will decommission an oxidation pond, Mr. Goulart said.
Streets and sewers director Phil Parker said Fort Oglethorpe saved $500,000 on the rehab project starting soon by opting to use cured-in-place pipe.
"It's less disruptive. You don't have to cut down shrubs and bushes, and you don't have cut up roads," he said.