Additional damage uncovered at Barden water tank

Dec 5, 2023

MIDDLEBORO – It was already known that the Barden water tank needed a new coat of paint, and in the 2018 and 2023 town meetings Middleboro voters voted to budget a total of $3 million to go towards fixing the tank. So far, the tank has been blasted and the tank has been drained of water.

As the work on the tank has commenced, additional issues were identified with the tank that will cost a total of $500,208 to address. According to a presentation given to the board by the Department of Public Works, the tank needs a new roof vent, there are structural repairs to the tank that need to be completed, and the floor of the tank needs to be vacuum tested.

Christopher Peck, the director of public works at Middleboro, said when the town set out to repaint the tank, they expected that they would likely find additional issues with the tank, although it was unknown at the time what specific issues they would find.

“The tank was identified as [needing] repainting around 2017-2018,” Peck said. “It was anticipated that some repairs would be required, however, the full extent of the required repairs to the tank were not identified until after the contract got awarded and the tank was blasted and cleaned.”

Before the issues were identified, the cost of the repainting of the tank was billed at a bit less than $2 million, according to the presentation. With these new repairs, the cost of the total project so far is $2.4 million dollars. The town has a budget of $3 million, and therefore the town still has additional funds available if additional issues are discovered.

At the Dec. 4 select board meeting, the select board voted to approve $500,208 worth of change orders to address the additional repairs the water tank requires. The tank is located near the Middleboro Middle School on Barden Road.

Peck said that the tank is projected to be operational in May of 2024.