Eagle turns dirt on second water treatment plant

The water treatment process

From The Vail Daily (Randy Wyrick):

A groundbreaking ceremony saw the first shovels of dirt turned Tuesday, July 10. Excavation should continue through the summer, and concrete should follow in the fall.

Water is scheduled to begin flowing in the fall of 2020…

The town’s current and only water treatment plant runs at 90 percent capacity during peak demand, and some days it’s higher, said Brandy Reitter, Eagle town manager. The new plant will generate as much as 2.5 million gallons of water per day and can be expanded to 5 million gallons per day. It should fulfill the town’s projected growth needs for the next 20 years.

“The town must accommodate its existing users. We also want to accommodate new customers and growth. We cannot consider new development unless we have the water to serve,” Reitter said. “Now is the time. The demands have increased significantly and we cannot wait any longer.”

This new water plant will be on the Eagle River. The current plant is on Brush Creek and is the town’s only source of water.

The town has good water rights on the Eagle River, thanks to tireless work by former town manager Willy Powell, Reitter said.

Bryon McGinnis, Eagle’s public works director, said the second water plant will help the town preserve those hard-won water rights…

A second water plant is also a public safety issue, McGinnis said, pointing out the many wildfires burning around Western Colorado.

The Lake Christine fire near Basalt hit that town’s watershed and strained its system. However, Basalt has a system of wells near the Roaring Fork River, and that second water source kept the water flowing, McGinnis said.

The town of Eagle saved $10 million and used it as a down payment on the new plant.

“Development has, for many years, paid its own way. The town has collected and saved fees to help pay for this,” Reitter said.

The remaining cost will be covered by a low-interest, 20-year loan from a state revolving fund.

Broomfield-based MWH Constructors will build the plant.

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