Residents of a new 135-unit apartment complex, to be built near Willow Creek Business Park on South Loop 256, will receive exceptional water pressure and quality, thanks to action by the Palestine Economic Development Corporation.

On Tuesday, the PEDC board of directors unanimously voted to grant a utilities easement to the city of Palestine to assist building 135 apartment units next to PEDC's Willow Creek Business Park.

“Our utilities are currently stacked out at Live Oak, a small road just south of the entrance,” PEDC Assistant Director Greg Laudadio told the Herald-Press on Tuesday. “We're allowing the developers to come across the property and loop into our water and sewer.”

Looping the water lines means the apartments will receive water from more than one source, boosting water pressure and making service more dependable.

Palestine Public Works Director Tim Perry told the Herald-Press that there will be additional advantages as well.

“Because of the water pressure, there's better fire-control and sprinkler systems,” he said. “Plus, the overall quality of the water is improved in a looped system.”

Perry said that, in a straight water line, water remains still when not being used. This can cause mineral deposits to build-up, clogging the pipes. Additionally, still water can lose chlorine levels, causing the water to drop below standards set by the Texas Commission for Environmental Control. If this occurs, the city must put the line on a costly flushing schedule, until the water quality improves.

Looped lines, Perry said, are not prone to such deficiencies.

The PEDC and its board of directors said they were delighted to work with the city to help alleviate Palestine's housing shortage.

“The lack of housing for employees is going to hamper our success in attracting businesses to the community,” PEDC Director Gayle Cooper said. “Palestine EDC is keenly aware of the housing shortage and will make every effort to assist in easing (it).”

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