A new plan to revitalize downtown Abilene could mean banning shallow water wells in certain parts of the city.
Tomorrow night, The Abilene City Council will vote on a potential municipal setting designation which means they're trying to make it easier for new businesses to build downtown by reducing clean up from contamination that may lie in underground water sources.
"They don't have to clean it to the extent that it could be drinkable water, however, they still have to address any other kinds of contamination," said Jon James with the city's Planning and Zoning Services.
According to James, the project to revitalize downtown comes at the cost of banning drinkable water wells in the center of town less than 150 feet deep.
James says the combination of road construction, automotive and cleaning businesses, among others, has led to what the city is calling 'historic contamination.'
"We don't know the extent of the contamination," James said, "We just know that those kinds of uses typically result in contamination."
Shallow wells would still be allowed in the area as long as the use is for irrigation and not for drinking, cleaning or watering produce gardens.
The city's goal is to build up downtown.
"Our hope is too see unused or underused properties developed," James said.
If and when the designation is approved by City Council, it would still have to be approved by the state's environmental quality agency.