The Water & Sewer Authority (WSA) has given preliminary approval to a firm’s proposal to install an automated car wash at the Newtown Mobil gas station/convenience store at 64 Church Hill Road, near Exit 10 of Interstate 84.
At an August 14 WSA meeting, agency members endorsed an application from Satyam Sundaram, LLC, which is seeking to install a car wash on its property to increase the range of services that the firm offers customers at its one-acre site.
Water used at the car wash would be discharged in the municipal sanitary sewer system.
Last March, the Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z) approved revised zoning regulations which would allow gas station/convenience stores to install car washing equipment, provided that they meet applicable local and state regulations.
The WSA’s endorsement of the project allows the firm to apply to the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) for an industrial discharge into the municipal sewer system.
In a July 29 letter to WSA, attorney Robert Hall, representing Satyam Sundaram, LLC, described the functioning of the proposed car wash, explaining that at least 40 gallons of water would be used per washing.
Mr Hall wrote that five chemicals would be used as part of the vehicle cleaning process. Mr Hall provided technical details on the chemistry of the substances, when considering that diluted volumes of the chemicals eventually would be discharged into the sewer system after being used for car washing.
The WSA is requiring the applicant to submit information to it on the use of grit separators and oil separators for the water that is used in car washing. Also, the WSA wants details concerning car wash maintenance practices.
If Satyam Sundaram, LLC, receives DEEP approval for an industrial discharge into the municipal sewer system, the applicant also would need a P&Z special permit for the car wash. Such a permit would describe where the car wash would be positioned on the site and how traffic would flow on the property, based on the presence of additional facilities there.
The applicant also would need final approval from WSA for car wash installation.
The applicant proposes installing a compact “touch-free” car wash mechanism which would move while the vehicle being washed remains stationary.
The Mobil station is located in an area where the state Department of Transportation (DOT) plans to make some significant traffic flow changes for improved traffic safety.
The project involves the realignment of the widely offset intersection of Church Hill Road, Edmond Road and Commerce Road. The project will create a conventional four-way signalized intersection of Church Hill Road, Commerce Road and Edmond Road.
In the $4 million project, the southern end of Edmond Road would be shifted westward so that Edmond Road becomes part of a four-way intersection with the other roads. The roads now comprise a broadly offset intersection, with the southern end of Edmond Road lying about 250 feet east of the northern end of Commerce Road.
Intersection realignment work is slated to start in April 2016.