WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

Filed Under:

D.C. Officials: Sewage Project Will Raise Rates, Bring Jobs

Play associated audio
D.C.'s plans to overhaul its sewage treatment system will mean pretty significant cost increases for users. 
Jessica Gould
D.C.'s plans to overhaul its sewage treatment system will mean pretty significant cost increases for users. 

Massive upgrades to the city’s sewer system will cause a major spike in residents' water rates, according to D.C. officials. But they also hope the giant construction project will lead to new jobs for District workers. 

As part of a federally mandated project, D.C. Water is planning to build three huge tunnels to capture the combination of stormwater and sewage that flows into local rivers during heavy rains. The agency broke ground on the project yesterday in Southwest D.C.

The machine used to build the tunnels is as big as a football field, and the project is the city's largest since the construction of Metro. But with a $2.6 billion dollar price tag, the project is going to be costly. An average retail customers' bill is expected to increase from $60 to $100 by 2010. 

Despite the costs, Mayor Vincent Gray says the project provides a major opportunity for D.C. residents. 

"We are going to make sure that these jobs that are created are going to the people of the District of Columbia and the people who live right here in Ward 8," he says.

The project is expected to reduce sewage overflows by 96 percent, and is scheduled to be complete in 2025. 

NPR

Chinese Dissident Artist Ai Weiwei Restricted To 20-Day U.K. Visa

Ai says he was denied a six-month visa because U.K. officials said he didn't list a criminal conviction in his application. Ai was imprisoned in China, but he notes he was never charged with a crime.
NPR

Humans Aren't The Only Ones To Go Ape Over Diets: Chimps Detox, Too

A group of Ugandan chimps has found a great way to boost their mineral intake and neutralize bitter compounds in their diet: by eating clay.
NPR

U.N. Envoy: Solution To Syrian Conflict Must Be A 'Political One'

NPR's Melissa Block speaks with United Nations Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura about creating a peace process in Syria. He says there is a new "sense of urgency" by many parties to end the conflict.
NPR

Debris Found In The Indian Ocean May Be From Missing Malaysia Airlines Jet

Investigators believe a piece of debris found on the French island of Réunion in the Indian Ocean could be from Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared in March 2014.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.