Several lift stations will move inland to improve wastewater flow

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Lift Station 45 located on Beach Drive is one of many stations being moved further inland.

Panama City City Manager Jonathan Hayes said the relocation will help move wastewater more efficiently in the area and protect St. Andrews Bay.

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“Whenever you have a station go down, a power outage, or any type of backup in the system or, God forbid, any type of vandalism, it’s right there on the bay. That’s a concern to have a system go down,” Hayes said.

Hayes said the lift station’s relocation has nothing to do with the Beach Drive sidewalk project.

“This is not directly related to the Beach Drive multi-use sidewalk that is underway with a sidewalk about 1.6 miles from Frankfort Avenue East to Sixth Street, just past Johnson Bayou, leading into Panama City,” Hayes said.

Right now city officials plan to move the lift station a few blocks north to the Garden Club Area. Workers will have to lay new pipes to route the wastewater to the Millville or St. Andrews treatment plants. 

“If you drive around these neighborhoods, Balboa and Skyland and Wood and Beach Drive and Buena Vista and examine that whole area, you’ll see lots of markings on the road as we work through putting out the very best place for those pipes to go in order to benefit the flow and in order to make sure that we kind of got a really good plan,” Hayes said.

Hayes said construction shouldn’t affect residents’ properties. 

“What we’d call the water main or the sewer main, those are almost always in either the right away or in the road. Not on people’s private property.”

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Hayes said the final result will benefit the community. 

“The result will be so much better for everybody because they’ll have more dependable water lines, dependable sewer lines, better functioning stormwater management systems as well as brand new roads and sidewalks.”

The city will be moving about 12 lift stations. The cost of the entire project will be about $25 million. The money is coming from a FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant.

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