Commuters making the daily trip between Ketchum and Hailey have surely noticed a construction project along state Highway 75, just south of Elkhorn Road and north of St. Luke's Wood River Medical Center.
The Lane Ranch pump station project is being conducted by the Sun Valley Water and Sewer District as part of a $4.3 million bond that Sun Valley voters approved in a special election in May. The bond paved the way for a number of projects in Sun Valley.
"The project is moving slowly," said Jack Brown, district manager for the Sun Valley Water and Sewer District. "It's in a tight spot and it's complicated."
The goal of the roughly $600,000 project is the replacement of the 18-year-old Lane Ranch pump station. Before the bond election, Brown described the old station as "nearly obsolete." In fact, the Sun Valley Water and Sewer District was fabricating replacement parts for the station because suppliers no longer produced parts for that era of lift station.
The crux faced by Brown and his crews is to remove the old station and building the new one, over basically the same footprint, without cutting off service to residents who depend on the lift station for wastewater needs.
Brown said sewer service to Lane Ranch and Elkhorn areas will not be affected by the construction.
"No one will notice it," he said.
"It is a difficult one, though," he added. "We are virtually done with all underground phases of the project and people should start to see it looking cleaned up soon."
Brown said the contractual deadline for the project is Dec. 31, but that he expects work to be completed by mid November.