Surf City’s search for land to dispose treated sewage water highlights infrastructure challenges for growing town

Nov 5, 2019

SURF CITY — A key challenge facing the coastal town of Surf City as it continues to approve subdivisions for a growing population is the expansion of its infrastructure to keep pace with that growth. 

There have been some successes, for sure.

 In the last year, the town has seen the completion of a new high-rise bridge that replaced a 1950s-era swing bridge — one that, although iconic and popular among many tourists and residents, caused an increasing amount of congestion for traffic entering and leaving Topsail Island. 


And the water system seems to be ahead of the curve. In September the mayor and council discussed attempting to take over water supply from the county in outlying areas of the town after a dry summer exposed the county’s limited supply to the densely populated Hampstead area. 

Surf City’s sewer system, however, is nearing a point where its wastewater treatment plant is running out of land to discharge effluent. The town is currently searching for additional land to purchase after a recent land survey of its Juniper Swamp property — 2,200 acres located 15 miles from the plant — revealed only a small fraction of the land could actually be used for wastewater collection. 

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