Water Treatment Plant

Water Treatment Plant History
In 1955, the Water Treatment Plant underwent an extensive expansion program. The city's water treatment capacity was increased from 4.5 million gallons per day to 7.5 million gallons per day. Settling basins were constructed at that time to increase the overall water treatment capacity. The increase was intended to eliminate problems of low pressure that had handicapped Manhattan for several years prior to the expansion. Enlargement of buildings and facilities at the plant was another part of the expansion program. The Sunset Park water tower and water mains from the plant to the tower and from the plant to the well field and booster station west of Riley County Hospital (now Mercy Health Center on Sunset) were constructed as part of the 1955 expansion program.
In 1971, a new Water Treatment Plant facility was constructed through a $4.4 million dollar expansion program. In addition to the new construction, landscaping improvements were completed and the well-known artwork on the face of the building became a noticeable improvement to the Water Plant grounds. In 1990, the Water Plant was expanded from a capacity of 10 million gallons per day to 20 million gallons per day. A significant rehabilitation to the settling basins at the Water Plant was completed in 1999.

In 2005, the City completed an improvement project at the water treatment plant which changed the secondary disinfection method from free chlorine to chloramines. Along with this change, the City also added a recarbonation step to the water treatment process. As part of this project a new building was constructed at the water plant to house the ammonia and carbon dioxide chemical feed systems, which are now used in the treatment process.

The conversion to the chloramination disinfection method has greatly reduced the levels of undesirable disinfection by-products. While the introduction of carbon dioxide in the recarbonation step has worked effectively to stabilize the pH of the finish water. These improvements help the City provide a better and safer drinking water for all its residents

Now, a major construction project at the Water Plant has improved both the efficiency of the treatment process and overall water quality.