U.S. Water News Online
ULYSSES, Kan. -- City officials faced with fixing a leaky
wastewater lagoon are considering restoring a dried up lake in
Frazier Park to handle water treatment.
Treated water in this southwest Kansas town currently is used for
irrigation or put in lagoons north of town, where the water usually
evaporates. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment, however,
has told the city to do something about a leaky lagoon.
As a result, city officials are considering creating a 15-acre
fishing pond with the water. The city doesn't have a lake, and
proponents say the proposed one might draw people from around the
region to Frazier Park.
"We feel it has potential to be something very good for the
community, something that could create recreational opportunities,"
Mayor Ed Wiltse said.
The KDHE has approved a plan to reinforce the liner in the city's
lagoons, but city leaders are awaiting a response to the lake
proposal, which was submitted in August. Both proposals are expected
to cost between $500,000 and $600,000.
Ulysses Park Superintendent Jeff Kreie said the lake in Frazier
Park disappeared about 20 years ago, because of the accumulation of
silt, dry weather and the closure of the old wastewater treatment
plant. Treated water from that plant had been put in the lake until
it was replaced in 1983.
Sunflowers and weeds, some up to 6-feet high, currently inhabit
the lake bed.
Ulysses residents seemed to have adjusted to the idea that the
lake would be made of the 749,000 gallons of water flushed down the
toilets and washed down the drains of the city's homes and businesses
"They understand it'll be clean," said Joline Heckman, a project
"We just want to enhance (the park) by creating a lake," Heckman
said. "The neatest thing (about the idea) is just the ability to go
Pathogens would be eliminated from the wastewater before going
into the lake, said Dennis Haag, an environmental scientist in Lenexa
with Tetra Tech EM, an engineering firm that has been advising the
Communities have been forming wetlands and lakes from wastewater
since the 1970s, but Haag called the idea "fairly unique" to Kansas.
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