Environmental Protection

Butler Water Reclamation Facility Opens in Peoria, Ariz.

Black & Veatch, a global engineering, consulting, and construction company, recently celebrated the opening of the Butler Water Reclamation Facility (WRF) with the city of Peoria, Ariz., according to an Aug. 25 press release.

The $110-million facility, the largest capital improvement initiative in Peoria's history, incorporates advanced membrane bioreactor (MBR) technology, which allows the city to reclaim its wastewater as a renewable water supply via aquifer recharge and secures future water resources needed for city growth. Previously, Peoria handled water treatment jointly with the neighboring town of Tolleson.

Stephen Bontrager, Utilities director for the city of Peoria, said sustainability was the driving factor for the facility. "We carefully evaluated our options for long-term wastewater treatment in combination with the city's need for sustainable water planning," Bontrager said. "Water is a precious resource; therefore, we easily concluded that building our own wastewater treatment to retain water credits was necessary to sustain the city's economic development."

The facility design blends with the surrounding area, with much of the plant built below ground level and bordered on all sides by a landscaped buffer. In addition, it consists of low-profile compact structures that are architecturally compatible with their surroundings. Another key feature is the enclosure of all major process units to confine odors in combination with a state-of-the-art odor control technology.

"MBR technology was selected for the facility because it provides a high-quality effluent in combination with a much smaller area footprint than other conventional technologies. The technology was central to gaining public acceptance," said Cindy Wallis-Lage, chief of Global Water Technology at Black & Veatch.

In its first phase, the facility has the ability to treat 10 million gallons per day (mgd) of reclaimed water for artificial aquifer recharge. By recharging the aquifer, the city earns water credits, which means that Peoria can extract the equivalent amount of water from the aquifer to meet future water needs. With the simple addition of several membrane cassettes, the facility will ultimately treat 13 mgd.

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