OMU in planning stage of replacing Hillcrest water tank

Aug. 13—Owensboro Municipal Utilities is in the planning stage of replacing its water tank at Hillcrest Golf Course.

OMU officials said last week the utility is "kicking off the engineering phase of the project" and has contracted with HRD, a design firm with offices in Lexington, to help plan the project.

Sonya Dixon, OMU's public relations and communications manager, said the "standpipe" tower at the golf course was taken out of service in 2017.

"That water tank is not allowed for as much water turnover as we would like, and the site doesn't provide the pressure we need," Dixon said. Water turnover is when water in the tank moves out and new water enters.

"You want your water to keep moving through the system," Dixon said. "The standpipe doesn't allow us the turnover we need, which is way it was decommissioned in 2017."

Since 2017, the utility has used water pumps to supply water to the area, but a new tank is needed, she said.

"It makes much more economic sense to have a different tank designed in a different way," Dixon said.

The current two million-gallon tank will be replaced by a one million-gallon tank, Dixon said. The design of the tank will depend on the needs of the area.

Hillcrest Golf Course is owned by the city and managed by the Parks and Recreation Department. Earlier this year, Owensboro city commissioners approved using $2.5 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds to pay for the tank replacement.

Dixon said OMU will work with parks officials to minimize the impact of the project on golf course operations.

Demolition of the tank and construction is expected to take 12 months. A timeline for the project has not yet been set.

Dixon said the scope of the project could include replacing water lines to the new tank. Whether that's necessary will be determined by the engineering study.

"We are not just looking at it as one piece," Dixon said. "It's a bigger project than just putting a tank in the ground.

"We are very carefully thinking through the design."

James Mayse, 270-691-7303,, Twitter: @JamesMayse