The city of Washington is exploring a possible cost share for a sewer line extension project.

At its Oct. 10 meeting, the board of public works instructed Director of Public Services John Nilges to meet with the developer, Kurt Unnerstall, of a new Stone Crest expansion project to discuss cost-sharing options.

Nilges said the new development needs a sewer line. The city was approached by the developer about working together. The idea is to share some of the cost of the project and build a 12-inch sewer line instead of an 8-inch.

Nilges said the project needs a line extension in order to be developed. He said the city has done some cost sharing in the past as long as the project presents some “value” to the city.

“I do believe there is value in this,” he said.

By increasing the size of the line from an 8-inch line to a 12-inch line, Nilges said there is a very good chance a lift station recently installed in the Malvern Hill subdivision would no longer be needed. If the engineering works, he said the bigger line would allow the lift station to be shut down.

Water/Wastewater Superintendent Kevin Quaethem said lift stations have pumps that have about a five year lifespan. To replace the pumps, it’s about a $10,000-$12,000 expense for the city.

Another bonus for the city would be having more property near city sewer lines. Nilges said the development of Washington in the future looks to be heading south, so helping expand the sewer line would allow for more future developments to hook up to the city’s system.

Nilges said he hasn’t run the numbers yet for the extension project, but estimated building the 1,300 feet of 12-inch pipes would cost about $45,000. He said the city paying for a share of that now, would lead to savings later by not having to regularly replace the lift station pumps.

Nilges said he isn’t sure what the cost share would entail. He said it could be a 50-50 split or something like the city just paying for the cost difference between the 8-inch and 12-inch line.

With the board’s permission, he wants to meet with the developer and come back in November with a clearer picture of what the expense would be for the city.

The board backed the idea. Board Chairman Kurt Voss said he appreciates Nilges’ forward thinking.

“A little money spent today could save us more down the road,” Voss said.