6-16 Water treatment

Terry Walker makes a request for more cement as he works on a manhole at Duncan’s Water Treatment Plant.

DawnDee Bostwick
The Duncan Banner

Nearly three years in the works, updates to Duncan’s water treatment plant are slowly coming to a close, with construction expected to last just one more year.

Worked in two phases, both the plant’s north and south locations are undergoing modifications to meet new Environmental Protection Agency standards.

The north plant has been operational since January and work to the south plant is under way.

“Phase 2 is probably just a little over 50 percent complete,” Public Works Director Scott Vaughn said. “Basically, the Phase 2 project entails rehabilitation of the south plant.”

The modernization of each plant has included replacement of filters and newer, automatic controls. Underground piping of several different lines, such as chemical feed lines, is also part of the project.

In an effort to prepare for peak demands during the summer, Vaughn noted that contract work stated the south plant must have been operational by May, though work to underground structures, like chemical lines, will continue through the summer. The plant has been online for about 30 days.

With nearly 10 million gallons a day needed to meet Duncan’s high summer demand, the two portions of the plant are capable of producing up to 14 million gallons of drinking water a day combined.

“It’s already hot and dry and our demand has started going up recently,” Vaughn said.

Once the weather begins to cool and demand subsides, the south plant will be taken off line so that more work can be completed. At that time, a new system to help clean the water filters will be put in place.

Despite the need to complete the rehabilitation of the facilities, the plant has always and will continue to produce clean water, Vaughn said.

“If we could take just these two test results, we’d be in compliance,” Vaughn said. “However, the regulations require the average of four tests.”

Tests are done once per quarter and the first two rounds of testing have shown positive results.

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