Page 1

Infrastructure Report


If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.

—Loren Eisely, The Immense Journey, 1957

Austin Water and its partners in capital improvement project (CIP) delivery have much to be proud of in 2011. Working together, we accomplished nearly $250 million of infrastructure investment in our water, wastewater and reclaimed water systems. Throughout 2011, we achieved important milestones on many of our key projects and programs such as: the installation of nine miles of replacement water main, significant progress on the downtown wastewater tunnel, the extension of the reclaimed water system to the airport, the near completion of the South I-35 Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Program, significant improvements to the Hornsby Bend Biosolids Management Facility, and substantial progress on Water Treatment Plant 4. It takes a committed team to achieve $250 million of CIP work in one year, and we have created the attached report to celebrate and thank the thousands of individuals from Austin Water; other City Departments; Boards & Commissions, small, minority and women-owned businesses; contractors; engineering firms; community groups and the many others that contributed to our success in 2011. With your help and collaboration we’ve kept our commitment to provide high-quality and reliable water to Austin residents and businesses. We are looking forward to a 2012 that will be just as strong. Greg Meszaros, Director Austin Water

2011: A Banner Year


eliable water and wastewater services are essential to the health and welfare of the community, and continued investment in our water utility system is a prerequisite for Austin’s economic growth and prosperity. In Fiscal Year 2011, the Utility spent $250 million on infrastructure project improvements. Major expenditures included: $40.6 million for rehabilitation and relocation projects, $66.2 million for Water Treatment Plant 4 (WTP4), $38.1 million

for the South I-35 Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Program, $24.6 million for the Downtown Wastewater Tunnel, and $14.8 for the Federal ARRA stimulus-funded projects.

K ey P roject H ighlights The Downtown Wastewater Tunnel: with a project cost of nearly $50 million, the tunnel will be substantially complete by the end of Fiscal Year 2012, improving wastewater collection for all of Austin’s downtown area. The project made significant progress in 2011.

Wastewater collection rehabilitation projects: comprising about 10.5 miles of sewer main completed in FY 2011 through rehabilitation, replacement and the Accelerate Austin Street Reconstruction Program. Govalle Wastewater Tunnel: rehabilitation of three large wastewater drop shafts connecting to the tunnel is underway. In FY 2011 water and wastewater system construction began in the Anderson Mill Estates and North Acres neighborhoods. These large projects will provide water utilities to these areas that are currently served by septic tanks and, in some cases, water wells.

Water distribution rehabilitation projects: comprising about 47,000 linear feet of water pipelines in FY 2011, including a total of approximately 13,800 linear feet of pipeline replaced under the Accelerate Austin Street Reconstruction Program.

South IH-35 Infrastructure Program The South I-35 Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Program was initiated in FY 2008 to build approximately $65 million in infrastructure on a fast track to allow for the rapid development of the South I-35 corridor. All water pipeline projects under the program were completed by the end of FY 2011.

Hornsby Bend Improvements In 2010, Austin Water was awarded a $31.8 million, zero-interest, federal stimulus loan to implement plant-wide green improvements at the Hornsby Bend plant, including a new, 15-acre compost pad, upgrades to enhance the energy efficiency of the biosolids processing and increase production of digester biogas. Projects at Hornsby Bend have been recognized with the U.S. EPA Region 6 PISCES Award and the American Concrete Pavement Association Gold Award.

Water Treatment Plant 4 (WTP4) The City is constructing a new water treatment facility in northwest Austin that will draw water from Lake Travis, which will provide reliable treated water to an expanding service area. To date, the Utility has spent $162.8 million on WTP4 at Bullick Hollow and the related transmission main. Expenditures on the plant during FY 2010-11 only, totaled $66.2 million.

The reclaimed water program Reclaimed water is highly treated wastewater that may be reused in sustainable landscaping irrigation or other activities that don’t require fully treated drinking water. In FY10-11, Austin Water completed the University of Texas Main (23,000’) and the Austin Bergstrom International Airport Main (6,000’).

Plant Improvements & Maintenance Davis projects: Many projects saw significant progress on their designs in 2011. Decommissoning and replacement of the Medium Service Pump Station; adding a new, indoor electrical substation and upgrading the on-site power distribution system; upgrading various chemical feed process areas, replacing antiquated equipment and process systems; replacing chlorine scrubbers.

Walnut Creek projects: upgrading the onsite power distribution system; constructing odor control and corrosion improvements; repairing bank erosion at the plant’s outfall and replacing the roofs on several plant buildings. Other projects: Pilot Knob Reservoir improvements and pump station construction; Avery Ranch Reservoir construction; and a variety of wastewater lift station and package wastewater treatment plant improvements.

Ullrich projects: Adding new coating to basins to prevent leaking; reinforcing basins support structures; removing lime grit to minimize impacts to other plant infrastructure; repairing and reinforcing the Low Service Header; replacing various roofs; replacing obsolete parts on the plant control system.

Partners A

healthy water utility is good for the entire community. Our projects ensure a reliable supply of high quality water for all our residential and business customers. We appreciate our partners who work with us daily to maintain and improve our services. City of Austin Public Works Dept. City of Austin Contract Management Dept. Boards and Commissions Contractors and vendors Engineering firms Small businesses Minority-owned business enterprises Woman-owned business enterprises Community groups Our customers, the residents of Austin and of course... Our employees

Copyright 2012 City of Austin/Austin Water Public Information Office

Infrastructure Report  

A comprehensive report summarizing all the major infrastructure improvments the Utility made in 2011. I wrote and designed this document in...