- Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs
Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Awards $10 Million for Sewer System Improvements in Worcester and Shrewsbury
Worcester — Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito and Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Matthew Beaton today announced $10 million to the City of Worcester to support an infrastructure project that will reconstruct the Whitla Drive sewer pumping station and expand the capacity of the sewer system in the Route 20 corridor in Worcester and Shrewsbury. The announcement was made during an event at the Belsito Auto Center on Route 20 in Worcester.
“The Route 20 Sewer Extension Project will increase sewer capacity in an under-developed area, which will attract economic development to the Route 20 corridor and protect public health and natural resources,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Our administration is committed to helping communities invest in their infrastructure to create jobs and ensure public safety.”
“This important infrastructure project will provide significant economic benefits to the Worcester area, as well as environmental benefits which cannot be measured in terms of dollars and cents,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “We are proud to be able to work together with our local partners to protect the environment and encourage commercial and industrial development in one the of the Commonwealth’s great cities.”
The City of Worcester will receive $3.5 million this year and $3.5 million next year from the Environmental Bond Bill as well as a one-time installment of $3 million from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. The City will match those funds with $10 million in order to re-route, extend and expand the capacity of the limited sewer system currently serving the Route 20 area.
“Old, failing pipes present a problem when they leak and contaminate areas that should remain clean and open to the public,” said EEA Secretary Matthew Beaton. “This project will allow us to protect our beautiful natural resources by rectifying the threat of sewage overflowing into Lake Quinsigamond and the Broad Meadow Brook Wildlife Sanctuary.”
“MassDOT is pleased to have helped fund critically-needed infrastructure improvements along the Route 20 corridor,” said MassDOT Secretary & CEO Stephanie Pollack. “This project underscores the benefits of the collaborative approach the administration has taken when investing in transportation and economic development opportunities throughout the Commonwealth.”
The Route 20 Sewer Extension Project will provide sewer service to the area between Massasoit and Sunderland roads by adding 19,300 feet of collector sewers and 11,500 feet of dual 16-inch force mains, and will include a new connection to the Upper Blackstone Water Pollution Abatement District treatment facility in Millbury. It will also combine the existing sewer system with the new “single” system to make it more efficient, and eliminate two old pumping stations and aging cast-iron force mains within the Broad Meadow Brook Wildlife Sanctuary.
Reconstruction will allow the Whitla Drive pump station to handle existing and projected future flows from the Broad Meadow Brook and Grafton Street pump stations, as well as additional flows from the Route 20 corridor.
“This project has the rare distinction of bringing both huge economic and environmental benefits to the city of Worcester and the region,” said City Manager Edward M. Augustus, Jr. “Thank you to the Baker-Polito Administration for once again demonstrating its commitment to our city and its economic wellbeing.”
“The investment in the Route 20 Sewer Infrastructure Improvements will have significant impacts stretching beyond the city of Worcester, and I am pleased that the Baker-Polito Administration has identified the expansion of sewer services into this underdeveloped area as a priority,” said State Representative Hannah E. Kane (R-Shrewsbury). “The expansion will allow for continued collaboration between the City of Worcester and the Town of Shrewsbury, making the development of properties along the Route 20 corridor in both municipalities a possibility. This investment will spur economic development in Shrewsbury in an area that is partially zoned for business and limited industrial development while addressing the environmental concern of sewage overflow into Lake Quinsigamond and Broad Meadow Brook Wildlife Sanctuary.”
“This project offers exciting new opportunities to enhance the economic vibrancy of the City of Worcester and the surrounding area,” said State Senator Michael O. Moore (D-Millbury). “The anticipated environmental and economic impacts will surely benefit our region. I appreciate the hard work and efforts of local and state officials, the Administration, and everyone involved with helping to bring this initiative to fruition.”
“I want to thank the Baker-Polito Administration for the authorization of these crucial funds needed to make the Route 20 Sewer Project a reality,” said State Representative Daniel Donahue (D-Worcester). “The need for sewer access in this area has long been discussed and today's announcement highlights how close partnership between our local government, legislative bodies and state executive offices can bring about effective solutions for our communities. This project will bring immense operational and environmental benefits to Worcester, and will open up an entire section of the City ripe for major economic development opportunities.”