Ballston, Glenville examining Route 50 sewer extension

Highway sign reading 50
FILE - Freeman's Bridge Rd at the corner of Route 50, Airport Rd. and Worden Rd. in Glenville.
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BALLSTON AND GLENVILLE — The neighboring towns of Ballston and Glenville are looking at expanding sewer service along the Route 50 corridor in hopes of sparking new economic development. 

Both municipalities have contracted CHA Consulting, an engineering firm with offices in Albany, to complete a feasibility studies on the proposed line that would run from Gleason Road in Glenville north along Route 50, ending just past Larkin Drive near the Wiggly Worm Bait Supply store in Ballston Lake. The line would extend along portions of Lake Hill and Kinsley roads in Ballston.

The two studies are being completed independently, but the sewer lines would ultimately be hooked into one another of capacity allows.

Ballston Supervisor Eric Connolly said the town has been looking into extending sewer service along the corridor for months as part of a broader effort to redevelop the Burnt Hill business district, with the ultimate goal of attracting new businesses to support the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Central School District.

“Our dream is to have a sewer system to attract all kinds of new kinds of businesses,” he said. “And our dream is to completely revitalize downtown Burnt Hills.”

Waste from the line would either be sent to the nearby pump station located at Ballston Lake Fire Department Memorial Park, or the pump station located at the McCray Hill Industrial Park via a low-pressure line, according to Connolly, who noted that the final plans would be determined by the capacity at each pump station.

Residents would not be required to hook into the system, according to Connolly, who noted that the primary goal of the sewer line would be to attract new business in an underdeveloped part of town.  

He added that once the study is complete the town plans to apply for state funding to offset project costs. The town is also working to complete a separate grant application in hopes of securing a $4.5 million state grant to redevelop the Burnt Hills area as part of the NY Forward initiative, which aims to spark redevelopment in small communities.

“We would not be looking to hook up homeowners. They would have the option if they wanted to join, but they would not be mandated to join into that sewer district,” Connolly said. “But we would want the business owners to join into that sewer district.”

Glenville Supervisor Chris Koetzle said the town has long sought to extend sewer service north along Route 50, and completed a feasibility study on the proposal about a decade ago. Sewer service along Route 50 currently ends at the Town Center shopping center.

“We’ve been looking at sewer going up to the town line for as long as I’ve been supervisor,” he said.

Plans at the time included extending sewer service to the residential neighborhoods along the thoroughfare, but were ultimately dropped due to the high costs, Koetzle said.

But Koetzle is hopeful that the project can finally move forward that Ballston is looking to extend sewer service. Waste created in Glenville would be sent north to a treatment plan in Saratoga County, instead of south to the plant in Schenectady that is farther away.

The proposal this time around is narrower in scope than a decade ago.

Instead of extending sewer service into the neighborhoods, the line would only run along Route 50 with the goal of attracting new businesses to fill long vacant parcels along the thoroughfare, Koetzle said.

He added that the town is not looking to disrupt the residential makeup of the Route 50 corridor north of Town Center, but looking to “sprinkle in” small businesses on undeveloped lots.

“The vision of north of Town Center is to still keep it largely residential, but sprinkle in some of those small businesses that support residential neighborhoods,” Koetzle said. “We can only do that by bringing in sewer. … It’s about taking those dilapidated old buildings and empty properties and finding ways to get small businesses there. This will be key to that.”

The feasibility studies are expected to be completed later this year.

Contact reporter Chad Arnold at: [email protected] or by calling 518-395-3120.

Categories: News, Saratoga County, Schenectady County, Scotia Glenville

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