The plant was recently evaluated by GAWP inspectors on its well field operations, chemical processes and documentation, and scored 90% or better in all areas. City staff will accept the award in the category for groundwater systems that pump over 10 million gallons daily (MGD), at the GAWP Conference in Macon, Ga., on Tuesday April 16.
“Every day, thousands of water customers in our city turn on their faucets with little thought to the water that streams out and how it moves from its initial source through the treatment process and ultimately to our taps,” said Director of Utilities Henry Hicks. “I commend Water Treatment Plant Superintendent Craig Dozier, Assistant Superintendent Jason Barnes, and the other skilled men and women responsible for bringing Valdosta water customers quality drinking water daily.”
The city’s water treatment plant, located on Guest Road, processes over 3.5 billion gallons of drinking water for its residential, business and industrial customers annually. The state-of-the-art facility obtains the city’s water supply from 7 wells that are drilled into an underground layer of porous, water-bearing limestone known as the Upper Floridan Aquifer.
“The City of Valdosta is proud to provide quality water services to our customers for public health purposes, fire protection, economic development and the quality of life of our citizens,” said City Manager Larry Hanson. “Any measure of a successful community is in some way related to access to safe water, and we are proud of the Valdosta Water Treatment Plant personnel who make this their daily mission.”
Originally built in 1992, the plant’s major treatment systems were upgraded in 2007 to maintain quality water services while keeping up with city growth. The plant uses ozone as the primary treatment process and was the first municipal plant in Georgia to use this technology. It has many innovative features, including on-site generation of sodium hypochlorite for disinfection and computer monitoring and control of treatment processes and a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system to monitor the distribution system pressure and water levels in all elevated tanks in the system. The system is permitted for an average daily flow capacity of 14 MGD and a maximum daily flow of 22.5 MGD and flows through over 300 miles of mains throughout the city. Considerations were also given during the 2007 upgrade to allow for a future expansion of the Water Treatment Plant to 45 MGD to meet the city’s expected growth needs.
“The City of Valdosta is proud to offer some of the finest water in the state, not only to our citizens but also to the industries that choose to locate in Valdosta due to the quality of our water,” said Mayor John Gayle. “Our Water Treatment Plant is also positioned for growth with the capability of meeting the water needs of our city and its citizens for years to come.”
The Georgia Association of Water Professionals (GAWP) is a not-for-profit association founded in 1932 with membership of over 4,000 water and wastewater treatment plant operators and managers, municipal and industrial officials and environmental managers, civil engineers, environmental engineers, scientists, manufacturers and their representatives, contractors, elected officials and others concerned with Georgia’s water resources. The organization’s main purpose is to educate and assist those who have an interest in the proper management and protection of Georgia’s water resources.