Tonawanda News

The Town

September 13, 2012

Town to demolish landmark water tank

Tonawanda News — TOWN OF TONAWANDA — The iconic and ultra-visible town water tank near I-290 will soon be demolished, town officials said.

“The tank is not salvageable,” Director of Water Resources Ken Maving said.

The tank was originally built around 1960 and has been a town landmark to many since then. 

“It’s a tower that everyone identifies with the town because it’s so visible from the Youngmann,” Emminger said. “It was one of three water towers, and now we will be down to two.”

Despite the structure’s visibility, the 4-million gallon tank hasn’t been used since 1996 due to its condition. 

“Many didn’t know it wasn’t being used,” Emminger said. “But it’s decayed and rusted through.”  

Maving said the cost of rehabilitating the structure would be $1.8 million, which far exceeds the town’s bond authority for the project. Tearing it down will likely only cost about $100,000.

Erie County is currently taking another tower down in Cheektowaga, and that estimate served as a ballpark range as to what the town’s demolishment will cost. 

The town board voted to approve GHD Consulting Engineers, LLC to do the engineering work for the job at a fee of $29,900 at the board’s regular meeting Tuesday evening. GHD’s work will start the process for the project. 

A concrete timeline will likely not be set until the engineering work is done. Then, requests for proposals for the deconstruction will be sent out for a contractor.

“It should improve the area for the residents over there,” Emminger said. 

But some who live near the tank are concerned about massive construction going on in their backyards.

“I’m scared to death because of the mess it’s going to create,” said Amelia Bursztyn, of Koenig Road. Her home backs up to the tower.

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