Examples of Wastewater Treatment Planned for State of King County, Wash. in 2005
Out of sight and out of mind. That's usually an apt description for the 348 miles of sewer lines that run beneath streets and structures in the service area of Washington’s King County Wastewater Treatment Division.
But in 2005, the 40-year-old regional utility could be more visible as it completes several sewer construction projects, upgrades some of its 47 wastewater pump stations, and starts building other sewer facilities. The work will include rehabilitating aging facilities so they continue to operate reliably and increasing the capacity of others to serve the region's growing population.
Perhaps less visibly, the wastewater utility will also be designing two new treatment systems to protect water quality in north King County, south Snohomish County and the city of Carnation.
"Our sewer rate payers invest every month in building, upgrading and operating wastewater facilities that protect public health and the environment," said Don Theiler, director of the Wastewater Treatment Division. "That sewer rate also helps pay for controlling combined sewer overflows and cleaning up contaminated sediment in the Duwamish River and Elliott Bay."
Here are the major construction and design projects scheduled for 2005 throughout King County.
East King County
Bellevue Pump Station Upgrade: King County is planning to upgrade this aging pump station in west Bellevue and build a new force main to increase capacity and ensure safe and reliable operations. The county plans to spend about $1.5 million on this project in 2005 as it completes design and prepares for construction in 2006.
Carnation Wastewater Treatment Facility: The City of Carnation has contracted with King County to design, build and operate a new wastewater treatment system. In 2005, the county plans to spend about $1.9 million to begin design and permitting for the new wastewater facility.
Juanita Bay Pump Station Replacement Project: This project will replace the aging pump station north of Kirkland, increasing capacity and ensuring safe and reliable operation. The county plans to spend about $7.7 million in 2005 as it begins construction, which will run through 2007.
Sweyolocken Pump Station Upgrade: Upgrades to this pump station, next to Bellevue Way and the Mercer Slough Nature Park, will handle increased flows. Construction began in spring 2003 and is expected to run through winter 2005. Expenditures in 2005 are estimated at $800,000.
North King County/South Snohomish County
Brightwater: The Brightwater treatment system in south Snohomish County and north King County will meet the needs of the growing population in that area. The county plans to spend about $113.5 million in 2005, mainly for land purchases, plant design and conveyance design.
Hidden Lake Pump Station and Sewer Improvement Project: This project in Shoreline will replace King County's 40-year-old Hidden Lake Pump Station and part of the nearby Boeing Creek trunk sewer. It also includes an underground wastewater storage pipe to help limit overflows. The county plans to spend about $8.4 million in 2005 as it begins building the pump station and storage facility with enough capacity to prevent future overflows by 2008.
Denny Way/Lake Union CSO Project: The county's Denny Way/Lake Union Combined Sewer Overflow Project will provide storage and treatment to greatly reduce the number of untreated combined sewer overflows into Elliott Bay and Lake Union. Construction began in spring 2000. After spending about $7.2 million during early 2005 to complete the project, the county plans to begin operation of the system in spring 2005.
Densmore Drain: In 2005, the Wastewater Treatment Division will begin a $1.8 million project to reduce stormwater overflows along Densmore Avenue south of Green Lake in Seattle. This project will also keep stormwater out of Green Lake, which is important to the health of the lake.
Henderson/M.L. King CSO Project: The county's Henderson/M.L. King Combined Sewer Overflow Project in the Rainier Beach community will reduce overflows from sewers in the area that reach Lake Washington. Construction began in fall 2002. The county plans to spend an estimated $6 million to complete the project by spring 2005.
Lower Duwamish Waterway Cleanup: As part of the county's continuing commitment to cleaning up contaminated sediments and complying with agreements with regulators and local governments, the Wastewater Treatment Division will move ahead on identified early action areas in the Lower Duwamish Waterway. This $4 million effort in the Lower Duwamish Waterway Superfund site is Phase 2 of a long-term cleanup effort.
Matthews Park Pump Station and Sewer Improvement Project: Upgrades to this 30-year-old pump station in northeast Seattle will ensure safe and reliable operation. Construction is scheduled to run from fall 2004 through 2006. The county plans to spend about $6.8 million in 2005.
Murray Avenue Pump Station: In 2005, King County will begin a three-year $820,000 project to reduce nuisance odors coming from this pump station in West Seattle. This project involves building a new odor-control vault to prevent the release of smelly gases and adding new odor scrubbing equipment to capture and clean any smelly gas before it's released.
South King County
Pacific Pump Station Replacement Project: The existing station is approaching the end of its useful service life and is being replaced to carry increased wastewater flows from the city of Pacific. Construction began in fall 2004 and is scheduled to end in summer 2006. Expenditures in 2005 are estimated at $2 million.
Vashon Treatment Plant Upgrade: Upgrading the existing treatment plant will increase capacity, add backup systems and move the marine outfall farther out in the Puget Sound to meet regulations and protect human health and the environment. Construction began in fall 2004 and is scheduled to end in 2006. Expenditures in 2005 are estimated at $5.2 million.
Sewer rate and capacity charge
Beginning Jan. 1, 2005, King County's monthly sewer rate is $25.60 for single-family residences. The charge for multifamily, commercial and industrial customers is $25.60 for each 750 cubic feet of water used. The county's monthly rate had been $23.40.
Under contract with 18 cities and 16 local sewer agencies, King County charges the agencies a monthly sewer rate for providing wastewater treatment. The local agencies bill that monthly charge to residences, businesses and industries in their wastewater collection systems. The local agencies charge their customers a sewer rate for operating the collection systems.
To ensure that all customers pay their fair share for the cost of building new facilities, King County also levies a capacity charge on new connections to the sewer system.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2005, the capacity charge for new connections is $34.05 per month for 15 years for a single-family residence. The charge for connections to the system before 2005 is the amount in effect at the time of the connection.