Archive for Thursday, July 3, 2008

District caps old gas well discovered at construction site

July 3, 2008

An abandoned gas well was discovered at the site of the new Eudora Elementary School.

The well was found at the 47-acre site, located in the area of 10th and Peach streets, during the preconstruction grading process.

The Kansas Corporation Commission came and tested the well for natural gas, which is odorless, and no gas was found. KCC then capped the well with 250 feet of concrete.

"We're confident that it has been taken care of, and we've taken every precaution to ensure student safety," Superintendent Don Grosdidier said.

There was no indication before grading that the well existed or that it was ever an active gas well. The hole was either an old natural gas well or a test drill site that was never developed.

The district opted to install ventilation systems to the well at a cost of about $2,000. The ventilation system will expel any gas that is detected and a monitoring system will alert district officials.

"We decided to take the added precaution of venting the well and placing sensors that would immediately indicate if there was gas being released from it," Grosdidier said. "We've gone well above and beyond anything that needs to be done to ensure student safety."

KCC Public Information Officer Rosemary Foreman agreed with Grosdidier's assessment of the situation and said all parties involved did indeed surpass what was required to ensure future safety.

The well is directly under where the new $27 million school will be built. The school is part of a $45 million school bond passed in November 2007 and is set to be completed in fall 2009.

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