The Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank has announced that it has provided $15.8 million in loans for clean and drinking water projects in the City of Newport. The funding will be used to upgrade the Long Wharf Pump Station and replace water mains and lead service lines in the city.

Jeffrey Diehl, CEO of Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank, said, “Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank is pleased to provide more than $15 million in financing to allow the City of Newport to invest in critical clean and drinking water infrastructure that residents and businesses rely on every day.” Diehl added that the projects will “pay dividends for decades to come,” and that the city will save more than $2.7 million in debt service by financing through the banks below market rate programs.

The $12.5 million loan from the bank’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund will finance upgrades to the Long Wharf Pump Station, including the replacement of pumping and odor control systems, as well as the installation of a deployable flood barrier wall. The upgrades will harden the wastewater treatment system to the impacts of flooding, while also reducing odors at the plant.

The $3.3 million loan from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund will allow the Newport Water Department to replace water mains city-wide and to identify and replace all lead service lines connected to the project. Lead service lines can result in serious health effects, and their replacement is essential.

“On behalf of the City of Newport I want to thank Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank for providing us with low-cost financing to invest in essential clean and drinking water projects,” said Newport Mayor Xay Khamsyvoravong. “This is a great example of Newport working with our state and federal partners to make critical infrastructure improvements while minimizing the cost to our residents and businesses.”

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