SUPERIOR, Nebraska (STPNS) -- Motorists along Highway 8 between Superior and Hardy have probably noticed work is progressing on the municipal water pipeline between the two communities.

The pipeline connects to Superior's water system via a dead-end line located east of Superior. When completed, Hardy will essentially become part of Superior's water system and buy the water, just like any other water customer. The cost of building such a pipeline is approximately $100,000 per mile.

In June 2004, the state health department served notice to Hardy that their municipal water was under the potential influence of surface water, based on testing the wells. Hardy's wells are only about 35 feet deep. According to the state, the village was given 18 months to develop a plan for supplying a new water source to its residents. The tests were conducted in September 2003.

In August 2005, engineers told Hardy Village Board members the best option for solving their water problem was to build a pipeline to Superior.

The village then began to complete the necessary steps towards seeking grant money to help pay for the project, including a community income survey.

In February 2006, the village board passed a resolution directing Mayor Bob Ginther to sign an application for grant funding for the project; board members also unanimously accepted the water purchase proposal from the City of Superior ญญ $1.20 per 1,000 gallons. Hardy officials said they hoped to get the price down to around $1.00, but $1.20 was reportedly as low as Superior would go.

The system includes a buried, six-inch water line from Superior to Hardy and a booster pump at Hardy. To add another wrinkle to the water situation, Hardy is in one natural resource district; their well-field is in another.

The pipeline will follow the railroad tracks and Highway 8. The only visible signs of the pipeline will be a small treatment structure near I 4 Detail, three 6-inch fire hydrants and several air-release manholes situated along the line.

Engineering the project is Miller Associates, Kearney. The contractor is Midwest Underground, Inc., Syracuse. The project is being financed by United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development.