The City of Valdosta will host a ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday, July 12, at 8 a.m., to celebrate the culmination of two significant sewer infrastructure improvement projects. The ribbon cutting will be held on the 75-acre site of the new Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP), located at 3180 Wetherington Lane. The public is invited to attend.
The ceremony celebrates the $60 million completion of the Force Main Project and the WWTP.
“City officials have worked diligently to protect the interests of Valdosta citizens, and we look forward to sharing this occasion with all of our utilities customers,” said City Manager Larry Hanson. “The new wastewater treatment plant and 6-mile force main that feeds into it will not only meet today’s needs but will secure our ability to continue to provide quality services for our citizens for decades to come. These projects could not have occurred without citizens’ support of the SPLOST referendum.”
The $36 million Force Main Project has already proven to be effective in alleviating the stormwater inflow and infiltration (I&) issues and sanitary sewer overflows in flood-prone areas of the city during heavy rain events. Funded by a low-interest Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA) loan and utilizing SPLOST VII revenue for a portion of the repayment, the project includes the construction of a 6.2-mile force main, four new lift stations, a new headworks structure for the new WWTP, and a 6-million-gallon equalization basin to handle stormwater I&I into that facility.
The $23 million wastewater treatment plant, constructed approximately 16 months ahead of schedule, has the capability of treating a maximum gallon daily (MGD) wastewater flow of 18 MGD and a peak hourly flow of 22 MGD. Furthermore, the plant’s 6-million-gallon equalization basin allows for the plant to store excess water received during major rain events and handle peak instantaneous flows of up to 38 MGD—more than double the current capacity. Equipped with state-of-the-art technology, the new facility is treating wastewater in a manner that is safe for the environment, meets current and future regulatory requirements, and is expandable for future growth needs. Importantly, the new plant opens debt free and was paid for in full by SPLOST VII funds.
“The city was fortunate to work with some of the most talented design and construction companies on some of the most significant projects in our department’s history,” said Director of Utilities Henry Hicks about Parsons, Layne Heavy Civil and Garney Construction, who will also be present at the ribbon cutting event. Locally, Lovell Engineering provided the majority of the civil engineering support to Parsons for the force main portion of the project. “We have already witnessed the positive impacts of these projects on our sanitary sewer system and the overall quality of service delivery, and we invite our citizens to celebrate this occasion with us on July 12.”
Citizens are also invited to tour the WWTP following the official ceremony.
“We remain committed to providing adequate water and wastewater treatment services to our citizens, maintaining a functioning sewer collection system and discharging treated water in an environmentally responsible manner,” said Mayor John Gayle.
For more information, contact Public Information Officer Sementha Mathews at 229-259-3548.