Montgomery County moving forward on new $6M environmental services lab

Montgomery County is moving forward on a plan to move its Environmental Services Laboratory to downtown Dayton after commissioners recently approved soliciting bids for the $6 million project.

Beth Moore, the assistant director of environmental services, said the lab will serve over 80,000 homes and businesses in Montgomery County and is responsible for making sure the county’s drinking water and discharged wastewater meets state regulations.

“When you look at our environmental lab, they need to be available 24/7 because we provide water 24/7 and they process over 30,000 tests per year so there are a lot of tests ensuring the quality of water we provide as drinking water and we discharge into the river is safe,” Moore said.

The laboratory is currently in Moraine and is decades old. The decision to build a new lab stems from the county’s project to replace some aging infrastructure. The new lab is being paid for through the $103 million the county received through the American Rescue Plan.

The new lab will be accessible through the county’s parking garage at 40 Vista View Drive.

Moore said the new facility will be state-of-the-art with updated technology to ensure measurements are accurate and drinking water is safe.

“The laboratory is expensive to build but we are lucky enough to have this space that we can renovate that really saves the taxpayer as opposed to building a new space and this is a key location that is right in the middle of Montgomery County,” Moore said. “It is centrally located.”

Montgomery County Administrator Michael Colbert told the commission that this is the type of project ARPA funds were meant for.

“(This) is a very large ARPA project and it’s going to touch pretty much all, about a quarter-million customers and subscribers of our water and sewer throughout the community,” Colbert said. “(We will) have a state-of-the-art lab so we can test the quality of the water but we can also test the water quality that we are putting back into the river through our sewers.”

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