Massena water tower: repair or replace?

Published: Jul. 24, 2023 at 4:47 PM EDT
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MASSENA, New York (WWNY) - The Massena water tower has been a part of the village for more than 60 years. Now, village board members are debating whether to repair it or replace it.

Repairs will cost $2.5 million. Replacing it would cost more.

“The actual tower has needed to be painted for quite some time. They actually - I don’t know if people realize this - they actually paint the interior of that and it’s showing signs of that painting needing to happen again,” said Massena Mayor Greg Paquin.

Paquin says before any repairs are done to the water tower, a $50,000 grant will be used to study the water services in Massena.

That will lead to a larger discussion about not just the water tower but also the treatment plant and wastewater plant.

Reggie Cross, a 93-year-old villager, knows a lot about Massena’s water. He ran the Department of Public Works starting the in 1950s and remembers when the village got its water from Alcoa.

Cross says Massena’s million-gallon water tower was built in 1963 and it, along with the rest of the village’s water infrastructure, should be looked at.

“Some of the lines were put in the early 1900s and they’re all what we call cast iron lines with lead joints and that’s pretty old. They would have to be replaced in the system,” he said.

Any major changes are years away, but village officials are talking now to figure out a plan of what to do and how to pay for it.