Award-winning water treatment facility gets significant upgrade
BELLEVILLE, Ill.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Illinois American Water’s Interurban (Metro East) District, which serves
the communities of East St. Louis, Granite City, Belleville and
surrounding areas, has completed a significant upgrade at its East. St.
Louis Water Treatment Plant. The approximately $12 million investment
helps to enhance reliability and operational efficiencies, while
incorporating environmental technology.
The project, which kicked off in 2015, included a significant electrical
upgrade and water treatment system improvement. According to Karen
Cooper, senior manager of field operations and production, a new 2.5
megawatt generator and power distribution switchgear were installed in
news buildings able to withstand 150 mph winds. Upgrades were also made
to critical electrical and SCADA monitoring systems, to ensure continued
high-quality and reliable water service. Overhead electrical lines
distributing power to remote parts of the plant were also replaced with
underground lines to ensure safety and reliability.
The water treatment system was also upgraded. The Mississippi River, the
source water for the Metro East area, can have high levels of sand and
grit. To combat this, a grit removal system was installed. According to
Cooper, the technology will reduce chemical usage and maintenance,
resulting from sand and grit in the treatment process.
Cooper said, “There have been many expansions and renovations in the
last century to the East St. Louis plant to ensure reliable, safe water
service to Metro East customers. We are proud of our history and
continued commitment to invest prudently and proactively. This recent
upgrade improves not only our operational efficiencies but also our
Illinois American Water contracted with Sachs Electric in Granite City
on the project. Sachs committed to diverse participation on the project.
Illinois American Water President Bruce Hauk explained, “At Illinois
American Water, our greatest assets are our employees, suppliers, and
contractors. We see diversity as a vital element to not only our
company’s success, but that of our entire team.”
Illinois American Water’s investment at the East St. Louis water
treatment plant is an example of continuous investments and improvements
being made, helping to meet the demands of today’s customers and
planning for the future. These types of investments are needed across
the nation to maintain critical infrastructure.
According to the American Water Works Association, the leading trade
association serving the country’s water industry, at least $1 trillion
is needed over the next 25 years to maintain and replace the nation’s
outdated water and wastewater systems. Illinois American Water has been
addressing this challenge by investing $70 -$100 million annually in
water and wastewater improvements across the state.
The East St. Louis water treatment facility is an award-winning member
of the Partnership for Safe Water. This national recognition is given to
fewer than 150 water treatment plants in the U.S. The Partnership is a
national voluntary initiative developed by U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) and other water organizations to recognize water suppliers
that consistently achieve water treatment standards that go above and
beyond EPA regulatory requirements. As a member of the program, water
utilities pledge to continually improve their treatment operations and
undergo a rigorous review that includes a four-phase self-assessment and
About Illinois American Water
Illinois American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is
the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing
high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to
approximately 1.3 million people. American Water also operates a
customer service center in Alton and a quality control and research
laboratory in Belleville.
With a history dating back to 1886, American Water is the largest and
most geographically diverse U.S. publicly-traded water and wastewater
utility company. The company employs more than 6,700 dedicated
professionals who provide regulated and market-based drinking water,
wastewater and other related services to an estimated 15 million people
in 47 states and Ontario, Canada. More information can be found by