Why do we need this project?

This project was not forced upon the City by the WDNR. However, standard engineering and life cycle schedules are completed in 20 year increments (NR110.09)(1)(a). A thorough review of the Whitewater facility has not been done since its construction in 1982. Planning for items that have outlived their useful life and preparing the utility for another 32 plus years of service is the responsible thing to do.

Ultimately, we must provide quality service to our customers while maintaining compliance with all regulatory requirements. Those requirements have changed since 1982 and will continue to do so in the future. The heart of most treatment systems is the secondary treatment process. Here in Whitewater that is accomplished using Rotating Biological Contactors or RBCs. Again, these were designed to a 20 year life cycle and units run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

We currently have 3 of the 48 RBCs out of service due to shaft failure. Another 6 are out of service due to their proximate location to the failed units. I could develop a list but I feel the point is better addressed by cost. We have received two cost opinions over the years and both have shown the cost to repair our existing system is greater than the cost of replacing it with a different, more flexible, technology. The secondary process and associated equipment is the largest cost component with this project. Additionally, electrical infrastructure, hydraulic constraints and code compliance all account for a large portion of the overall cost. The inclusion of these items was driven by process reliability, permit compliance and safe working conditions.

Show All Answers

1. How long has this project been planned for?
2. What is the history of the Facility Plan?
3. What is the project status?
4. What will the impact be on my sewer use rate?
5. What is incorporated into Wastewater Utility debt?
6. Will this be the end of rate increases for a long period?
7. Why do we need this project?
8. Can the project be accomplished in phases?
9. What equipment will be repurposed?
10. What processes has the City selected?
11. What about phosphorus?
12. Tell me more about TM4 and why would we add more cost to this project?
13. What new regulatory items are on the horizon?
14. Will there be new challenges with the new treatment system?