Failure of the Habersham Wastewater Treatment Facility:
Habersham subdivision residents were sent the following letter on May 17, 2017 regarding the failure of the Habersham Wastewater Treatment Facility – the facility that treats each Habersham homeowners’ sewer. The communities that are connected to this once privately-owned waterwater treatment facility and which were impacted by this incident include but are not limited to the following:
- Habersham on Lanier (off Nuckolls Road)
- Habersham at Lanier (off Nuckolls Road)
- Townhouses at Lanier (off Buford Dam Road)
- Habersham-Lanier Pointe (Habersham Marina) Condos
- Others not listed
The Habersham Wastewater Treatment Facility failed primarily due to a fire at the facility’s main wastewater pumping station and due to excessive age and lack of proper maintenance and repair. The Habersham Action Committee (HAC) – the private organization that was in operational control of the facility until mid-April 2017, diverted sewer flow to the City of Cumming’s sewer system for treatment without permission from the City.
The Cumming Mayor and Council voted unanimously to condemn the Habersham Wastewater Treatment Facility and related properties on April 18, 2017 and to take immediate operational control of the facilities. This action was taken in an effort to protect the environment, the waters of Lake Lanier, and the almost 400 homeowners whose sewer system had failed.
List of the 395 known Habersham Wastewater Treatment Facility Customers:
Please click on the following links for maps and aerial photos of the multiple Habersham communities that are connected to the Habersham Wastewater Treatment Facility:
Habersham On Lanier Subdivision:
Habersham at Lanier Subdivision:
Habersham Marina Condos:
Townhouses at Lanier:
History of the Habersham Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP):
The Habersham WWTP was constructed around 1970 with a life expectancy of 20 to 25 years. Obviously, the facility is past its life expectancy and usefulness. Additionally, the NPDES discharge permit associated with this facility is not as stringent as those belonging to surrounding communities that discharge treated effluent into Lake Lanier. Many major upgrades are needed to bring this facility and its discharge up to federal and state lake discharge standards.
Habersham WWTP National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit:
The City is currently in the process of designing a new Advanced Water Reclamation Facility (AWRF) with membrane technology to replace the failed Habersham WWTP.
Current cost estimates are as follows:
- Membrane Facility AWRF – $4 million
- Replace 5 Wastewater Pumping Stations – $4 million
- Repalce dilapidated and root-clogged gravity sewer lines within the Habersham communities – $2 million
Total cost of repairs and replacements thus far: $10 million