Dempsey E. Benton Water Treatment Plant
Raleigh, N.C.
City of Raleigh, N.C.
Arcadis G&M of North Carolina
Archer Western Contractors; Walsh Group Chicago
$97.5 million
20 mgd

The E.M. Johnson Water Treatment Plant (WTP) in Wake County, N.C., serves Raleigh and six neighboring cities in the eastern part of the county. Faced with continued population growth in the area, Raleigh officials wanted a new facility to supplement the 86-million-gal-per-day capacity of the Johnson WTP, thereby accommodating local growth through projected 2018 totals. They also hoped to make the drinking water system less vulnerable to extended drought conditions.

Construction began on the 55-acre site of the Dempsey E. Benton WTP in April 2007. The design team from Arcadis G&M formed a close partnership with Archer Western Contractors, which kept the entire process running smoothly. As construction went along, the city expressed an interest in achieving Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification for its new plant; Archer and Arcadis were quick to respond.

They brought in Xylem to provide WEDECO ozone and low-pressure/high-intensity ultraviolet (UV) disinfection systems for the new facility.

The design team is awaiting state acceptance of UV credits for the method as a viable pathogen control. In the interim, the plant will use a chemical process to treat incoming potable water.

The design team placed a high priority on safety throughout the entire construction process, even as safety codes changed between the project’s beginning and end stages. Planners specifically referenced an effective safety program during the request-for-proposal process. In the end, contractors did not experience a single lost-time injury in the 524,000 man-hours required to finish the job.

“We are extremely pleased that our customer, the Dempsey E. Benton WTP, has been named a 2011 Top Projects winner,” said Wesley Lobo, Treatment Sales Director for Xylem. “The management of the plant remains on the cutting edge of water treatment technology, and the accomplished treatment plant along with its team is an excellent choice for the award.”

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