Interim solution to reduce discolored water issues prior to construction of new treatment facility
JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (May 18, 2021) – Indiana American Water announced at a ribbon cutting today that it has placed a temporary water filtration unit in service in Charlestown, Ind. ahead of construction of a new water treatment facility that will be completed in mid-2022. The temporary filters will remove iron and manganese from the ground water source and provide some incremental improvement in water quality until the new treatment facility is in service.
“This interim solution will provide filtered water for Charlestown residents for the first time ever,” said Indiana American Water President Matt Prine. “We promised when we purchased this system in 2019 that we would address the long-standing issue of high manganese levels and discolored water, and this interim solution, along with the construction of a new water treatment facility that will get underway later this year, will help us to deliver on that commitment.
“We have already invested more than $4 million in the community’s aging water infrastructure, performed much needed maintenance, and made significant process improvements to the system,” said Prine. “While these improvements have helped enhance system reliability and reduce the frequency of discolored water, this filtration unit and the new water treatment facility will provide a long-term solution for providing high-quality water service to our customers here.
“Just as our Southern Indiana Operations and Treatment Facility in Jeffersonville addressed high iron and manganese levels when it was constructed more than two decades ago, these improvements will provide high-quality drinking water for our Charlestown customers,” said Prine.
The temporary filtration units, which utilize two 7,500-gallon pre-treatment tanks and a horizontal pressure filter to remove iron and manganese, were placed in service last week at the company’s existing treatment facility on Charlestown Landing Road in Charlestown. The temporary filter will be removed once the new water treatment facility is placed in service in mid-2022.
Design on the new water treatment plant project is underway and plans include adding filtration to the treatment process, improvements to pumping equipment to increase the flow of water to enhance fire protection capabilities, and switching from using gaseous chlorine to sodium hypochlorite, a much safer liquid disinfectant.
“These solutions are a significant part of Charlestown’s plans to ensure that we offer a high quality of life for our residents as we strive to meet our growth potential in the years ahead,” said Charlestown Mayor Treva Hodges. “Filtered water is the solution that we’ve been waiting for and I am excited that Indiana American Water has followed through on their commitment to address the long-standing issue of discolored water in Charlestown.”
The treatment plant project is utilizing a design-build concept, bringing together construction and design professionals in a collaborative effort to enhance the finished project, more effectively control project costs, and speed up the timeline for completion.
This major water quality improvement continues Indiana American Water’s commitment to improving the Charlestown water system that started in March 2019, when it acquired the system. Recent system enhancements include adding nine automatic flushing devices to improve water quality where dead-end mains are located in the system, upgrading electrical, chemical feed, and control systems at the treatment facility, replacing or retiring more than 150 fire hydrants, and installing new backup power generating equipment that has already kept water flowing during several system power outages.
The company has also invested $1.4 million to replace or relocate 1.4 miles of water mains since acquiring the Charlestown system. Charlestown customers can expect additional ongoing system investments in the years ahead.