An improvement project is underway at Parkville Water District’s water treatment plant. The project will modernize the plant, improve operating reliability and set the stage for a future expansion.

The plant, which was constructed in 1985, treats surface water from Big Evans Reservoir and groundwater from a variety of wells around Lake County. The plant treats about 1.1 million gallons of water per day for Parkville’s approximately 7,500 customers.

Thanks to a “construction manager at risk” contract, the project is now down from a $2.2 million estimate to $1.1 million. The project’s contractor, Glacier Construction Company, has brought the 60% engineering design close to completion, reducing change orders, unexpected costs and time delays.

Last week, workers drained one of the plant’s modular filtration tanks. The contractor will now clean and re-coat the tank before adding new drains, screens and absorption media.

The treatment plant’s other filtration tank, which is currently treating water for Parkville customers, will be drained and rehabilitated after work on the first tank is complete.

The contractor will also install automatic valves and controls, an improvement that will allow Parkville operators to adjust water treatment from their phones and computers.

Another important part of the project is the installation of an emergency generator. The plant currently functions without electrical backup, a scary reality for Parkville, with 11 power outages so far in 2019.

“We are essentially bulletproofing the treatment plant in the case of a wildfire or some other sort of disaster,” General Manager Greg Teter said of the generator.

The improvement project will set the stage for a future plant expansion. Teter hopes to expand the plant building and add a third filtration tank in 2021.

“We won’t be able to expand capacity until this project is done,” the general manager said.

If all goes as planned, the project will be completed by April 2020.

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