This week, Pennsylvania American Water customers on the West Shore started receiving water from the company’s new West Shore Regional Water Treatment Facility. The $36 million state-of-the-art facility, which is capable of producing 12 mgd, will replace the company's two Yellow Breeches water treatment facilities, one of which has been serving customers on the West Shore since the early 1900s, the second since the 1950s.
“The Yellow Breeches plants have served our communities well over the years,” said Dan Warnock, president, Pennsylvania American Water, “however, we are really raising the bar with the West Shore Regional Water Treatment Facility. The facility offers more modern technology, enhanced treatment techniques, increased reliability and safety features to better serve our customers. We take water treatment seriously, and we want our customers to know that we are truly committed to providing them with the highest quality water and reliable service possible—for today and for the future.”
The facility contains the most modern and efficient equipment, Warnock explained. These technologies include a SCADA system, redundant systems throughout the treatment process, enhanced sedimentation provided by four superpulsator clarifiers, chemical containment, enhanced onsite water quality, reduced risk of flooding and enhanced security levels.
The facility was also built with the ability to transition to chloramines versus chlorine in the future, which reduces disinfection byproducts and the taste of chlorine in the water.
In addition to the new plant, the company invested more than $8 million on the West Shore distribution facilities to support the new treatment plant in 2005, including a new 1.5-gal underground water distribution tank. This year, Pennsylvania American Water plans to invest another $1.2 million on distribution system improvements on the West Shore.
The West Shore Regional facility, together with the Silver Spring water treatment facility, will serve more than 34,000 customers in Camp Hill, East Pennsboro, Enola, Fairview, Hampden, Lemoyne, Lower Allen, Newberry, New Cumberland, New Kingstown, Shiremanstown, Silver Springs, Upper Allen, West Fairview and Wormleysburg.
Water from the new plant will gradually be introduced to the system and be in full operation by end of April. The former Yellow Breeches plants will then be decommissioned. A ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled during National Safe Drinking Water Week, May 7 to 13, 2006. In addition, tours will be offered to interested customers May 9, every half hour from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.