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Lathrop High finally getting sewer service

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POSTED November 3, 2013 11:42 p.m.

LATHROP – The firm that was initially set to develop the section of town now known as Central Lathrop failed to meet its obligations.

It was an ugly, drawn-out process. Lawsuits were lodged and settlements were hammered out. Ultimately the City of Lathrop was left trying to find another builder willing to step in and continue the work that was abruptly stopped when the checks to the subcontractors stopped coming when the housing market crashed.

And as of last week, one of the more important – and public – work stoppages that came as a result of that snafu will start up again.

Saybrook CLSP (Central Lathrop Specific Plan) LLC. was given the green light by the Lathrop City Council to go-ahead with the construction of a storm water retention basin and an interim sewer pump lift station that will effectively hook-up both the Lathrop Generations Center – which is expected to be completed in the Spring of 2014 – and Lathrop High School with Lathrop’s existing sewer system.

A temporary license and entry permit were granted to formalize the process.

While the city is still months away from seeing the first patron of the Lathrop Generations Center – the six-acre community and teen center currently under construction across the street from Lathrop High School – walk through the front door, the stoppage of work on the sewer lift station that would serve the area prevented the high school from opening with an active sewer hookup.

The school is still currently on a septic system. The Manteca Unified Board of Education didn’t find out until weeks before students were first set to arrive on campus that there was even an issue. Then-Mayor Kristy Sayles had guaranteed the district that they would have everything that they needed in order to open the high school for the community. It took several years before the 2-by-2 committees again started meeting to mend the relationships that fell apart over the sewer snafu..

Even though the school district technically owns a portion of the land where the storm retention basin is being created, the city has a utility easement for the section of property and will exercise that in order to move things along.

Home building has finally started at River Islands – the master planned community that sat for nearly a decade as the developer waited for the market to rebound. Building is also expected to pick up elsewhere in Lathrop as the county recuperates from the housing collapse.

Prices are once again soaring in response to Bay Area housing prices. That was one of the critical components that drove the construction boom of the mid-1990s and early-2000s.

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