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The city of Cottonwood Shores took action that could lead to almost a half-million dollars in water and wastewater improvements with no hit to its budget.

The City Council authorized City Manager J.C. Hughes to sign five pending utility installation agreements with developers during the June 17 meeting. This will allow those developers and potential property buyers to use the city’s right-of-ways to install water and wastewater lines to lots at no cost to Cottonwood Shores.

“It’s $500,000 worth of improvements developers could put into our system,” Hughes said. “This allows them to install water and wastewater lines to lots where there are no water or sewer lines. There is no cost involved (to the city). It’s more of granting of easements.”

Currently, a number of Cottonwood Shores lots don’t have water and wastewater lines extended to them. Providing the use of right-of-ways offers an incentive for developers and buyers to install the infrastructure to affected lots.

Developers and buyers must meet specific criteria, Hughes said, including providing engineered plans, placing funds in escrow to cover minor costs to the city if they occur, having insurance, and other things normally done for new developments.

Hughes noted the city approved issuing $1.5 million in debt to upgrade waterlines, but that is to address interconnectivity among the system as well as increase volume and pressure.

“(Developers and buyers) are looking to provide services to lots they purchased,” he said regarding the right-of-way use authorization.