Ask anyone who's created a new water treatment plant or revamped an existing one, and you'll likely hear about the complexities of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations, OSHA standards, lab reports, and emergency operations procedures. But with a clearly defined approach to plant operations and maintenance (O&M), this large undertaking doesn't have to become overwhelming.
In Huber Heights, Ohio, a quiet suburb of Dayton, construction is nearly complete on the city's newest water treatment facility. Once completed, the new facility, which replaces one of two plants in the town, will receive water from 10 wells and contribute to an aggregate yield of approximately 11 mgd.
The Rip Rap Road Water Treatment Plant performs iron and manganese removal, aeration, air stripping, fluoridation, and chlorination. Since 1995, Earth Tech Inc., an engineering, construction, and consulting services firm based in Long Beach, Calif., has operated the Rip Rap Road plant and the city's main water distribution system and wastewater collection system. These facilities provide fresh water and wastewater treatment for more than 14,500 customers.
“Water is the critical ingredient for success in every growing community,” said Catherine Armocida, Huber Heights city manager. “After facing water shortages in 1995, our council implemented a plan to gradually increase water and sewer rates to pay for an expansion of the Rip Rap Road Water Treatment Plant in 2006. When finished, the plant's capacity will increase from 1.44 to 7 mgd, ensuring enough quality water to serve our citizens' needs and desired growth for years to come.”
As the project nears completion, the Earth Tech team is putting the finishing touches on its new O&M procedures. What the team has learned about designing in quality for this new operation may help your city successfully take on a similar task.PHASE ONE: CREATING A NEW TREATMENT PLANT
To get a new facility up and running and ensure it complies fully with all local and state regulations, you'll have to do your homework. Based on our experiences at Huber Heights, you'll need to identify, plan for, and manage key process components to ensure the success of your project. These steps include:
Identify available land. First, locate usable land that provides enough area for wellheads and isn't surrounded by harmful industries or landfills.
Know your current water sources and supply. For any city to grow, it needs enough water to meet its general demand. Locate your town's nearest water source and select a strategic location.