Sewer and Water


May River Sewer Master Plan

Following continued water quality concerns of the May River, it became imperative that action must be taken quickly to preserve this invaluable natural resource which is so critical to Bluffton’s environment, economy and quality of life. As a result of a directive from Town Council, the citizens, staff and consultants, created the May River Watershed Action Plan (Action Plan) with a dual approach to both restore water quality and to protect it into the future. In November 2011 via Resolution, Town Council adopted the Action Plan as a supporting document to the Comprehensive Plan to act as a guiding document to improve conditions within the May River. The Action Plan identified failing septic systems throughout the watershed as a potential pollutant source which resulted in the short- to medium-term goal of “Converting septic service to sewer service.” In order to accomplish this goal, representatives of Beaufort Jasper Water Sewer Authority (BJWSA), Beaufort County and the Town of Bluffton met on several occasions to discuss the feasibility of a cooperative effort and what direction it should take. The “unsewered” portions of the watershed were divided into definable service areas based on several factors including, but not limited to, geography, topography, municipal boundaries, and Beaufort County’s Community Preservation Areas.

The May River Sewer Master Plan seeks to:

  • Evaluate various design alternatives to provide sewer service to designated areas
  • Complete a high-level design, and
  • Estimate construction costs.

This information assists with identifying the area(s) of greatest need and impact to create more detailed, phased design(s) and cost estimate(s).

This report serves as the master plan document for the provision of sewer service to the unserved portions of the May River Watershed and has become another resource to ensure a healthy and sustainable May River. The May River Watershed Sewer Master Plan can be accessed by clicking on this link.

Buck Island Sewer Project (Phase 3, Phase 4, and Phase 5A-C)

  • BIS Sewer Phase 3

    Provide sewer and water to portions of Buck Island Rd., Kitty Rd. and Henry Jones Rd. to include connection to the residence and demolition of the existing septic tanks. In the construction phase now and expected completion in late spring of 2016.

    Chapter 7 of the Town of Bluffton's Comprehensive Plan identified the provision of sewer & water infrastructure as an important component of Community Facilities. This project also conforms to the direction in Chapter 10 of the Comprehensive Plan in which Federal and State funding (e.g., CDBG funds) should be sought for public infrastructure. The construction of sewer & water infrastructure was identified as a key recommendation in Chapter 6 of the Buck Island-Simmonville Neighborhood Plan. Finally, the Town's Council's annual assessment of community needs identified "Sewer & Water" as one of their top priorities.

  • BIS Sewer Phase 4

    Provide sewer and water to portions of Simmonsville Rd., Little Possum and Possum Point to include connection to the residence and demolition of the existing septic tanks. In easement acquisition now and expected completion in late fall of 2016.

    In accordance with Chapter 7 of the Comprehensive Plan, the provision of infrastructure such as public sewer & water would be considered an important component of Community Facilities. Chapter 10 reviews Priority Investment topics, and this project would fit in appropriately especially considering its use of leveraging to fund the work. In addition, Town Council identified the provision of sewer & water as one of its top Community Needs, and these services were consistently noted in the list of top priorities in the Buck Island - Simmonsville neighborhood planning process.

  • BIS Sewer Phase 5A-C

    Provide sewer and water to the remaining sections of the Buck Island/Simmonsville neighborhood -where possible. Currently in the design and permitting phase now and the expected completion is late spring of 2017.

    Chapter 7 of the Town of Bluffton's Comprehensive Plan identified the provision of sewer & water infrastructure as an important component of Community Facilities. The construction of sewer & water infrastructure was identified as a key recommendation in Chapter 6 of the Buck Island-Simmonville Neighborhood Plan. Finally, the Town Council's annual assessment of community needs identified "Sewer & Water" as one of their top priorities.

Jason & Able Sewer Extension

Provide sewer and water to Jason & Able streets including residents and businesses along May River Rd. between Red Cedar St. and Pin Oak St. Also includes Kirby Land and the portion of Red Cedar St. and Pin Oak St. between May River Rd. and Able St. The preliminary design is complete and the final design is underway. Beaufort/Jasper Water & Sewer is the lead on this project with Town oversight. Expected completion is the end of 2016.

Chapter 7 of the Town of Bluffton's Comprehensive Plan identified the provision of sewer & water infrastructure as an important component of Community Facilities. The May River Watershed Action Plan envisioned the provision of sewer service to replace septic tanks within the watershed as a key activity, and the Jason-Able Neighborhood falls within the watershed boundary. Finally, the Town Council's annual Community Needs Assessment identified "Sewer & Water" as one of the top priorities.

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